A California woman is suing Oakland police and Bay Area Rapid Transit over injuries she received when she was jailed after a night of drinking.
Megan Sheehan was arrested March 17, 2014, at the Lake Merritt BART station, and she admits to being intoxicated and belligerent, reported KGO-TV.
But she doesn’t think police had any right to throw her to the ground at the Santa Rita Jail.
“I should have never gotten that drunk, but also there are ways to detain someone and not break their face,” Sheehan said.
Surveillance video recorded at the BART station shows Sheehan screaming and yelling as she is dragged away by officers.
She appears calm in video recorded at the jail, although Sheehan continues to verbally clash with the officers.
Police said Sheehan, who works as a bartender and model, started “violently punching” an officer – who “guided her to the ground.”
However, body camera and surveillance videos show two officers grab Sheehan by the arms and fling her to the ground after she complains about one of them touching her.
A loud thud is audible on the recording, and Sheehan is seen lying unconscious on the linoleum floor, which is streaked with her blood.
An officer asks if she’s “out,” and another officer says, “you might want medical.”
Sheehan suffered four broken facial bones and lost several teeth in the incident, and Sheehan said she still suffers from psychological issues.
“They knew by throwing her to the ground without having her hands available to break the fall that she was going to suffer serious head injuries,” said her lawyer, John Scott.
“She was uncooperative,” he added. “She was intoxicated — and I believe she had to be taught a lesson. In police jargon, she flunked the attitude test.”
BART and Oakland police declined to comment, saying the litigation was still pending.
Watch this video report posted online by KGO-TV: