Alton man sues police and city over alleged beating

Kelly Holleran May 6, 2009, 11:00am

An Alton man has filed suit against the city, its police department and four of its officers, alleging officers beat him at least two times in the middle of the town.

Cedric J. Phillips claims he was near Emerald Avenue in Alton on May 17, 2008, when the first attack occurred.

According to the complaint filed May 1 in Madison County Circuit Court, Alton police officer Marcos Pulido hit Phillips with his hands, fists, feet and flashlights, pushed Phillips and threw him to the ground.

Although the suit does not state what provoked the officer's attack, it does continue in its description of the assault, saying Pulido sprayed Phillips multiple times in his face with a chemical agent believed to be pepper spray and shocked him with electro-shock type weapon.

Again on July 4, while Phillips was near the 700 block of Oakwood Avenue in Alton, police officers attacked him, using the same force they had during the May 17 incident. The attacking officers in the July incident included Joel Bromigham, Sgt. Daniel W. Rauschkold and Jeremiah T. Dressler, the complaint says.

Because of the attacks, Phillips suffered severe bruising, a concussion and fractured bones, experienced physical and mental pain and suffering and disability and incurred medical costs, the complaint says. Phillips says he also lost wages.

Phillips says Alton, the police department and its officers were guilty of wanton misconduct by failing to exercise due regard for Phillips's safety, by failing to promulgate appropriate procedures that prohibited the use of excessive force, by failing to train officers to avoid use of excessive force and by violently beating Phillips.

In the 12-count suit, Phillips is seeking a judgment in excess of $600,000, plus other relief the court deems just.

He is represented by Charles W. Chapman of LakinChapman in Wood River.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-453.

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