Alorton woman claims officers caused son's premature delivery

Ann Knef Jul. 7, 2005, 9:13am

An Alorton woman who was in her sixth month of pregnancy claims she was slammed to the ground by village police officers which harmed her unborn child and led to his premature delivery and permanent disability.

Destiney Cook filed suit against officers Gerald Crenshaw and Corey Allen and the village of Alorton in St. Clair County Circuit Court June 29. Cook's 11-count complaint claims damages for mental anguish, medical expenses and physical injuries she and her child, Giaco B. Riley Granger, suffered.

According to the suit, the incident took place Jan. 5 as she was walking toward her home at 4945 McCasland.

"Without cause or justification, defendant Gerald Crenshaw grabbed plaintiff's arm from behind, pulled plaintiff down to the groud, and slammed his body on top of plaintiff's, causing her and the unborn child, Giaco, severe trauma and injury," the suit claims.

"That after slamming plaintiff to the ground defendants Gerald Crenshaw and Corey Allen continued to struggle with plaintiff causing her shirt to come off and exposing her breasts and pregnant stomach.

"(Crenshaw) continued to struggle with the plaintiff knowing that said actions would likely cause harm to the plaintiff and her unborn child."

Cook is represented by Rhonda Fiss of Belleville.

Allen is named in the suit because he "did nothing to protect plaintiff from defendant Crenshaw, but willfully and knowingly participated in further struggle with plaintiff after she had been slammed to the ground by defendant Crenshaw," the suit claims.

Cook's suit claims the officers misused their powers and violated her right to due process and her constitutional protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.

"That the actions of Gerald Crenshaw as set forth herein were motivated by evil motive or intent, or involve reckless or callous indifference to the federally protected rights of the plaintiff," the suit claims.

The actions of Allen and Crenshaw "shock the conscience," Cook's suit claims.

Cook is seeking at least $550,000, punitive damages and attorney's fees, costs of the suit and any and all other and futher relief the court deems equitable and just "under the circumstances," the suit states.

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