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City Pays Out More for Cops Behaving Badly
Broken Arms Cost Taxpayers $88,750; Drawn Gun Nets $20,000;
"Intimate Search" Leads to $7900

Since April, Portland has shelled out over $100,000 more in settlements for lawsuits against the police for acts of misconduct. A man whose arm was broken at a traffic stop, a woman whose arm was broken during an argument over a parking space, a woman who had a gun drawn on her by an off-duty officer in Silverton, and a woman who was subjected to an "intimate search" negotiated out-of-court settlements.

Friends of the man, Randall Cooley, were pulled over by Officer Michael Close (#38094) in September, 2006. When Cooley walked to their car after the stop was over to talk to his friends, the officer yelled at him, cuffed him, and pushed him into a car. Cooley complained that the officer was using too much force on his arm, then Close pushed harder and snapped a bone (Willamette Week, June 24, 2008). Cooley's attorney, Steven Sherlag, filed the complaint in 2008, ultimately agreeing to the $78,750 settlement in July. Clearly the City felt the case was strong, as comparatively previous lawsuits regarding broken arms have cost them $31,257 (Sam Mack Howell, 1997); $47,500 (Craig Rosebraugh, 1999--PPR #19), $110,000 (Barbara Weich, 2005), and more recently, only $5000 was awarded to Lyudmila Trivol.

Trivol was involved in an argument about a parking space, and Officer James Botaitis (#41139), as well as Multnomah Deputy Bret Burton (who also was involved in the death of James Chasse), pushed her to the ground, stepped on her, pressed her face into the mud, and broke her arm. The police claimed she was aggressive toward them, and tried charging her with harassment, assault of a peace officer and resisting arrest. However, photos showed she was far away from the officers during the dispute among condominium management, the tow truck driver, the police, and her husband. The County also paid Trivol $5000, with the condo association kicking in another $8500 (Oregonian, May 14).

The woman who had the gun drawn on her, Kamichia Renee Riddle, was mostly successful in her appeal to the Citizen Review Committee (CRC) on the December, 2006 incident in which off-duty Officer Kevin Wolf (#40799) came to the house where she was working on renovations, pointing his gun at her (PPR #44). The CRC added one more "sustained" finding to three that the Bureau had already assigned--finding that the officer had put himself in danger by going to the house without calling for backup. The cop also apparently never said he was a police officer, telling Riddle to wait for a holiday card to discover his name. The City awarded Riddle $20,000 in mid- June.

Ondrea Hollinquest was subjected to an improper search inside her underwear in December 2007 by officers including Nicholas Rothwell (#47681). Mark Zylawy, who died when he was hit by a truck 2 years ago (PPR #44), was also on scene but not named as a defendant in the lawsuit. Hollinquest said she requested a female officer to conduct the search, as there were construction workers nearby watching; when the male officers pressed ahead, she says she objected loudly. The City settled with her for $7900 (Portland Mercury, April 16).

As in the complaint by Freedom Child (PPR #47), the police were alleged to have turned the radio up loud in the patrol car when they drove Hollinquest to jail.

This makes at least $221,650 spent by the City for misconduct against civilians this calendar year, and a total of at least $7,012,530.08 since 1993.

  People's Police Report

September, 2009
Also in PPR #48

Force Report: Disparities in Who Gets Hit
Sit/Lie Suspended
Chasse Family Partial Settlement Reached
  • Salem Man Dies After Taser Use
Review Board Reports&1st 2009 Hearing
"Sheriff" Skipper Skips School
Cop Arrested for Sexual Calls
  • Lake Oswego Lets Rapist Cop Keep Working
City Pays More for Misbehaving Cops
Council Pays for Secret List
Racial Profiling Treads Water in Portland
Legal Briefs: Supreme Court Strengthens Rights
Quick Flashes #48
  • Houseless Camping at Gay Pride Parade
  • Cops Don't Investigate Homophobic Assault
  • Deputy Charged in Off-Duty Taser Use
Rapping Back #48

Portland Copwatch
PO Box 42456
Portland, OR 97242
(503) 236-3065/ Incident Report Line (503) 321-5120
e-mail: copwatch@portlandcopwatch.org

Portland Copwatch is a grassroots, volunteer organization promoting police accountability through citizen action.

People's Police Report #48 Table of Contents
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