Cahokia police blamed for tazing and beating woman, suit says

Kelly Holleran Aug. 12, 2009, 8:22am

A woman is blaming Cahokia police officers for striking her numerous times with a Tazer gun and for beating her without provocation.

Christy M. Canady filed a lawsuit Aug. 10 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Cahokia and Cahokia police officers Maria Collins and Eric Stacy.

Canady claims she was on her property located at 1816 Loretta in Cahokia on Aug. 14, 2008, at about 9:46 a.m. when Collins and Stacy arrived to arrest her.

"The two aforementioned officers employed by the City of Cahokia Police Department intentionally and without legal justification committed the following acts on plaintiff; shot and struck her numerous times with a Tazer gun, forced her to the ground, handcuffed her, repeatedly struck and beat her, shoved her face into the ground and sidewalk, while plaintiff was under arrest in the custody of the City of Cahokia," the suit states.

Canady says the officers' actions were unreasonable and unjustified. Because of them, Canady suffered severe physical injuries, pain and mental and emotional suffering and incurred medical costs, the complaint says.

Cannady claims the officers violated her rights to be free from unreasonable seizure and free from excessive force.

She blames the city for inadequately investigating citizens' complaints of police misconduct and for improperly training and supervising its police officers.

In the six-count suit, Canady is seeking a judgment of more than $300,000, plus costs and other relief the court deems just.

Robert G. Jones of The Jones Law Firm in Belleville will be representing her.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-418.

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