Mistrial for Alabama police officer who threw Indian man

Reuters News
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Posted: Nov 04, 2015 4:53 PM

(Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Wednesday declared a second mistrial when a jury deadlocked again in the case of an Alabama police officer accused of throwing an Indian man to the ground, according to federal prosecutors.

Eric Parker, 27, was retried on accusations that he used unreasonable force while working as a Madison, Alabama, police officer. During his first trial in September, another jury in Huntsville, Alabama, federal court also deadlocked, resulting in the first mistrial.

Parker faced up to 10 years in prison on a single charge of depriving the Indian grandfather, then 57, of his civil rights in a case that drew international attention.

Sureshbhai Patel, who testified in both trials, suffered serious injuries during the February incident that was captured on videotape.

At the time, he had recently come to the United States and spoke no English. He was stopped outside his son's home during a morning walk by police, who were responding to a suspicious person call.

Parker abruptly flipped Patel to the ground during the encounter, resulting in injuries from which Patel was not expected to fully recover from, his lawyer has said.

Madison police released video of the incident recorded from inside a patrol vehicle and apologized for Parker's actions.

(Reporting by Letitia Stein in Tampa, Florida; Editing by Sandra Maler)