The federal civil suit was filed in the US District Court of Connecticut Tuesday on behalf of a Richard Cox. Cox sustained an injury while in police custody that left him paralyzed.
On Father’s Day, Richard “Randy” Cox Jr., 36, suffered a serious injury to his neck and spine while officials transported him to a detention center. The transport vehicle was unequipped with a seat belt.
Police had responded to a 911 call regarding a weapons complaint. Cox was arrested for criminal possession of a firearm and carrying a pistol without a permit.
On the way to the station the vehicle obtaining Cox was hit by a driver. Officials never placed Cox into a seatbelt.
Police camera footage released on June 30th revealed the incident.
Officer Oscar Diaz slammed his brakes while escorting Cox to the station.
Not to mention, records state Diaz drove with one hand while texting.
The speed data clocks the van moving at 36 mph, the officer honked the horn and slammed the brakes.
Cox–whose wrists are handcuffed from behind–is flung toward the back of the van, slamming headfirst into the metal doors.
Cox calls for help, repeatedly says he can’t move and that he thinks he broke his neck.
Officer Diaz tells Cox, “You’re gonna have to give me a second. I can’t open the door without another officer here.” The officer continues driving. A minute later, the officer tells him he’ll get him an ambulance when they arrive at the detention center and repeats that he won’t open the door.
Eventually the officer pulls over and checks on Cox. As Cox explains that he cannot move, the officer responds that he cannot move Cox without another officer present but can call an ambulance instead.
The ambulance is dispatched to meet the officer and Cox at the detention center.
Article continues after video.
At the detention center officers try to move Cox’s legs and Cox tells them they aren’t listening, and he can’t move. Officers continued to ignore Cox, replying, “You’re not even trying.”
Another female officer demands Cox to sit up. “Sit up. You’re doing extra s–t. Sit up.”
For the duration of the video, composed of body cam footage from the officers, they are stating that Cox is perfectly fine, as he was walking before the arrest and kicking the door at the beginning of the drive.
Cox suffered permanent paralysis below his neck, cervical spine injuries, contusions and injury to his muscle, spinal cord injury, permanent scarring and several other bodily injuries. The suit alleges that an officer failed to safely restrain Cox while he was handcuffed in the back of a police van. It also alleges that four other officers contributed to injuries while transporting Cox at a police detention center.
Essence compares, the injuries and incident of Cox to the 2015 death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore. While being transported in a police van, Gray sustained injuries to his spinal cord and died.
Civil rights attorney Ben Crump held a press conference with Cox’s family on Tuesday.
He explained why they aim for a 100-million-dollar lawsuit against Connecticut Police.
“Can you imagine what it is like trying to get him here and to the hospital now? Can you imagine what they have to go through?” he said. “He is a human being. Look at the humanity in him. We have a tradition in America of discounting people of color, marginalizing their value.”
Crump said he was seeking such a high sum because Cox would need $20 million to $30 million just to ensure his “basic quality of life.”
Following Cox’s incident, New Haven Mayor Josh Elicker and other city officials announced new reforms with the goal of eliminate the use of police vans for transporting individuals who are being detained by police.