Photo by John Schreiber.
Photo by John Schreiber.

A civil rights lawsuit filed today on behalf of a mentally ill transient alleges he was beaten last summer on the Venice Beach boardwalk by Los Angeles Police Department officers who used excessive force against him.

Samuel Arrington, 52, who is homeless and suffers from bipolar disorder, was beaten Aug. 7 by eight LAPD officers, who punched him, shot him with a Taser gun and hog-tied him for allegedly violating several boardwalk ordinances, according to the complaint filed in Los Angeles federal court.

A request for comment left with a City Attorney’s Office spokesman was not immediately answered.

According to the complaint, which names the city and various officers as defendants, Arrington was “unarmed and reclining in a chair … presenting no threat to himself or anyone else” and “breaking no laws” when officers encountered him.

As a result of the beating, the plaintiff sustained “significant and permanent injuries to his body and mind,” according to the lawsuit.

Officers have repeatedly used excessive force on Arrington over the years, including a June 2011 encounter in which he was charged with assault with a deadly weapon on a peace officer and jailed for nearly 1 1/2 years, according to the complaint.

One of the officers named in the lawsuit, Daniel Ramirez, recognized Arrington as a man who had resisted arrest in a previous incident, the suit says.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified compensatory, punitive and general damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Arrington’s attorney, Nazareth Haysbert, wrote a letter last month to the U.S. Department of Justice, calling for an investigation into what he described as a pattern of “criminal police misconduct” toward his client.

City News Service

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