Tasered woman claims police trumped up charges

By Steve Gonzalez | Apr 12, 2006

Laverne Gee filed suit against the City of East St. Louis alleging the city's police department maliciously shot her with a taser gun while fleeing authorities as well as filed false charges against her.

Gee, of Glen Carbon, claims after being tasered on June 17, 2005, she requested treatment for injuries at a hospital but alleges her request was denied by a police officer.

According to the four-count complaint filed in United States District Court April 6, Gee was charged with fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, failure to obey a peace officer, resisting a police officer, disorderly conduct and failure to display a driver's license.

Gee claims that as a basis for the charges against her, officers prepared and filed a misleading incident report following her arrest as a basis for the charges.

She also claims she did not commit the offenses she was charged with.

"At no time did the plaintiff strike, attempt to strike, or intend to strike any of the defendant's police officers or any other police officer," the complaint states.

"At no time did the plaintiff's conduct in any way justify the actions of the police."

Gee claims that she suffered and continues to suffer severe and permanent injuries to her body.

"The false criminal charges against Gee lacked any legitimate cause or justification, was intentional, malicious, reckless, and in bad faith," the complaint states.

Gee claims the incident has caused her to suffer serious mental anguish, psychological and emotional distress, and physical pain and suffering.

"As a direct and proximate result of defendant's actions, Gee was deprived of rights, privileges and immunities under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and the Laws of the State of Illinois," the complaint alleges.

Gee claims East St. Louis, as a matter of policy and practice, has with deliberate indifference failed to adequately discipline, train, or otherwise direct police officers concerning the rights of citizens, which caused the deprivation of her constitutional rights.

Represented by Ronald Foster of Beatty, Motil, & Foster of Glen Carbon, Gee is seeking compensatory damages in excess of $300,000, plus all costs of the suit.

The case has been assigned to District Judge Michael Reagan.


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