John J. Walsh, a partner at Hodges, Walsh and Messemer, LLP, recently obtained a defense verdict for the City of Mount Vernon in an excessive force case against a City Police Officer following a four day trial in the Southern District of New York.
Plaintiff was represented by Clifford, Chance and claimed that he was peacefully protesting allegedly corrupt judges and police brutality when he was confronted by a police officer who, without cause, attacked and choked him by pulling on a piece of wood attached to a string around his neck which he was using to hold up protest signs.
The defense maintained that plaintiff was walking in the middle of a busy street and refused to move to the sidewalk when requested to do so by the police officer. When the officer took plaintiff by the arm to place him under arrest, the plaintiff attacked the officer and a struggle ensued requiring the officer to defend himself from an attack with a sharpened screw driver.
After three hours of deliberations the jury, announced a verdict in favor of the defendant.