In the US state of Connecticut, five police officers have been charged after they apprehended a man who became partially paralyzed in the back of a police vehicle.
Randy Cox was being driven to a New Haven police station when the driver suddenly applied the brakes hard, throwing him headlong into the back doors of the van.
On June 19, he was detained due to gun-related accusations that were later dropped.
The 36-year-situation old’s was compared by civil rights activists to that of another black man in Baltimore in 2015.
When Freddie Gray was detained and restrained in a police van, he suffered a spinal injury and passed away.
The five officers in the Connecticut case were charged on Monday with misdemeanor – or minor – counts of reckless endangerment and cruelty.
Police claim that the police vehicle abruptly applied the brakes to avoid a collision at an intersection. The vehicle can be seen abruptly stopping and continuously blaring the horn in police body camera footage.
In the footage, some policemen can be seen making fun of Mr. Cox and accusing him of fabricating his injuries. Officers drag Mr. Cox by his feet and place him in a detention cell in the video. Then he was sent to the hospital.
After seeing the video, state police concluded that the five officers had acted recklessly, rendering Mr. Cox immobilized and denying him access to adequate medical care.
Since then, administrative leave has been granted to all five officers.
According to the family lawyer for Mr. Cox, the incident left him paralyzed from the chest down.
Karl Jacobson, the police chief in New Haven, revealed the charges on Monday and stressed the value of transparency in his agency.
In September, his family filed a federal lawsuit alleging negligence against the city of New Haven and the five cops.