Latino Man Brings Suit Against Seattle Police
Earlier today the law firm of Schroeter Goldmark & Bender filed a civil rights case on behalf of Martin Monetti, Jr. against the Seattle Police Department, Shandy Cobane and Mary Woollum. Mr. Monetti has several legal claims, some of which are highlighted here.
Last year, a video
surfaced showing officers Cobane and Woollum using excessive force on Mr. Monetti on April 17, 2010. Officer Cobane is seen kicking Mr. Monetti’s head. Officer Woollum is seen stomping Mr. Monetti’s lower back. Officer Cobane can be heard using a racial slur. But what the video did not show is Mr. Monetti being kicked in the head several times before filming started. Mr. Monetti was also subjected to additional racist language before filming started. All of this happened when he was lying on the ground, was complying with officer commands, and posed absolutely no danger. As a result, Mr. Monetti has claimed that officers Cobane and Woollum used excessive force on April 17, 2010.
Mr. Monetti also claims that Officer Cobane’s use of racial slurs demonstrates a discriminatory attitude against Latinos and is evidence of his racial bias.
Finally, Mr. Monetti has claimed that the Seattle Police Department had policies, practices, or customs that tolerated or did not prohibit officers from using racial and ethnic slurs while on the job. When officers used racial or ethnic slurs, it is our belief that the incidents either went unreported or without discipline.
“In pursuing this case, Mr. Monetti wants to protect others from experiencing the same treatment he received,” said attorney M.Lorena González
, “He hopes that this case will lead to much needed change within the Seattle Police Department.”
Among other requests, Mr. Monetti’s complaint seeks improved policies and training of Seattle Police Department officers and supervisors to eliminate the use of racial or ethnic slurs in policing; policies requiring bystander officers who see misconduct to immediately report that misconduct; elimination of use of excessive force against all people in our City but particularly against minorities; and improvement of supervisory responsibility on issues of use of force and racial and ethnic slurs. Read the Monetti vs. SPD Complaint.pdf.