After Tennessee police pulled over Timothy Hamilton for having tinted windows that were too dark, he ended up in a jail cell. Now, Hamilton, who is black, is suing the Franklin Police Department for using what he claims was excessive force.
According to the Atlanta Black Star, the incident took place on September 2018 and Hamilton filed his suit in August. The incident began when Hamilton was sitting in his parked car in the parking lot of the church where he's a member when officers cited him for the tinted windows. Officers allege that before Hamilton parked his car, he was parked illegally in the street while visiting a family member, and made an illegal U-turn when he left.
Hamilton's suit alleged that police grabbed him "by his arms and jerked him back and forth” before slamming him on the hood of his vehicle. He was then arrested.
Police then brought in a K9 unit to search the car for drugs, but found nothing. They did however seized three cellphones, $1,300 in cash and two sealed packages addressed to Hamilton, which turned out to contain speakers, the Tennessean reports. Hamilton was ultimately charged with "improper passing; resisting stop, halt and frisk; and stopping, standing or parking outside a business or residential district." Those charges were later dropped and expunged from his record.
Speaking to WZTV, Hamilton's attorney said that the way his client was treated by police was completely unnecessary.
“All they had to do was tell him he violated traffic law and give him a ticket and go on, but that wasn’t their purpose, their purpose was to pick on a young man in a fancy car,” Richard Brooks said. “They said he can’t have this fancy car and be Black in Franklin unless he’s a drug dealer.”
Watch WZTV's report on the story below: