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Lawsuit: Grand Rapids police beat unarmed teen | News

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Lawsuit: Grand Rapids police beat unarmed teen

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- The city of Grand Rapids and three department police officers are the target of an excessive force lawsuit.

The federal lawsuit, filed Dec. 23, 2015, involves an incident from June 2014, alleging three officers detained an unarmed 15-year-old black teenage male to search him for a gun. It claims one of the officers threw the boy to the ground and hit him in the head with a flashlight.

He sustained serious head injuries and has since suffered from long-term effects, including loss of speech, stuttering, severe headaches and other issues, the suit claims.

Natalie Thompson of Grand Rapids, the boy's mother, filed the lawsuit. The following statement is attributed to her and was released through her attorney:

"My son's injuries are so severe that he will never fully heal mentally, physically, or emotionally. He, I, and our family are devastated by this beating. The officers involved have no concept of the severity on consequences of their actions. No one is above the law."

Months after the incident, a court dismissed a charge of resisting arrest against the teenager, and a jury found him not guilty of carrying a concealed weapon.

Grand Rapids spokesman Steve Guitar said he is aware of the lawsuit, and added that it's too early to comment on the pending litigation.


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