Alabama Police Assault Indian Grandfather Walking On Sidewalk, Leave Him Partly Paralyzed

Human Rights

57-year-old Indian citizen Sureshbhai Patel was visiting America for a very special purpose: he recently became a grandfather and he wanted to visit his son and daughter-in-law to help them take care of their 17-month-old son while the father pursues his Masters at nearby University of Alabama Huntsville.

The problem is, Patel will not be able to do any of this anytime soon. Because as he was walking on the sidewalk outside his son's home, a police officer forced him to the ground, leaving him with injuries that included being partly paralyzed, with limited motion in his legs and some in his arms.

Apparently, the police officer was responding to a neighbor's phone call that a suspicious man was walking outside and looking into people's garages. The Madison County police department has suspended the officer and will be doing an investigation.

Hank Sherrod, a civil rights attorney the family has hired who has handled several cases involving Madison police, has said the family plans to sue the police. “This is broad daylight, walking down the street. There is nothing suspicious about Mr. Patel other than he has brown skin,” said Sherrod.

“It is a dream for me because I came from a very poor family and I worked so hard here,” his son said to the local press. “I'm totally devastated that I might have made a big mistake.”

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