A black teenager says a police officer violated his civil rights during an altercation at a train station.
Andre Little sued the city of Richmond, California, after Officer Kristopher Tong pointed a Taser at his groin and fired the stun gun at his scrotum.
Little said the officer approached him while he was waiting for a train and asked if the teen was associated with another group of teens who’d been “detained for questioning.”
The suit claims Little told him he was not part of the group, so the officer asked him to move to another spot on the station platform.
Little refused, the complaint says, and the officer grabbed him by the wrists and wrestled him to the ground with another officer.
The teen said he began screaming for the officers to let him go because they had the wrong guy, but Little said Tong pulled out the Taser and pointed it at his head.
After Little pushed the Taser away, he said Tong pointed the stun gun at his groin.
The teen said he began screaming, "Don't Tase me bro! Please don't Tase me in the balls! You don't have to do this!"
But the suit claims Tong did so, anyway, striking him in the scrotum.
The officers then placed Tong on his stomach and fired the stun gun at his back, the suit claims.
"The officers finally stopped the attack when the Taser dart became lodged in [Little's] back," the lawsuit states.
U.S. District Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley ruled that Little failed to prove the officer singled him out or acted out of racial animus, but the judge said he could amend his complaint to address her questions about the teen’s location in relation to the previously detained teens.
"If it can be plausibly inferred that Tong approached Little and questioned him about his association with the detained African-American men because Little is also African-American, such racial animus provides the further plausible inference that Tong's actions occurring in close temporal proximity -- ordering Little to move down the platform and the use of force -- were also motivated by racial animus," Corley wrote.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]