A lawsuit has been filed against the City of Austin and an APD officer over an elementary school teacher’s violent arrest in June 2015.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court, alleges Officer Bryan Richter used excessive force when arresting Breaion King on June 15, 2015 during a traffic stop. Dash camera video obtained by KVUE and the Austin American-Statesman shows the traffic stop rapidly escalate from Richter commanding King to close her car door to seven seconds later forcibly removing her from the driver’s seat, pulling her across a vacant parking spot and throwing her to the ground.
The suit alleges Richter falsely informed responding officers that King had attempted to throw a punch at him. It also states after other officers arrived, Richter told another officer he “would have just hit her and be done with it” if she were a man.
The suit also states, “Officer Richter then asked for [King] to be charged with resisting arrest, and said 'If they ask what she’s resisting just put arrest. If they ask specifically what she was resisting say arrest. They won’t care about that.'”
The resisting arrest charge against King was dropped after prosecutors saw the dash camera video of her being slammed to the ground. Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg told KVUE in July that her office had asked APD’s Special Investigations Unit to assist them.
According the lawsuit, the city is liable due to its inadequate policies, training, hiring practices and established customs in similar prior cases. The lawsuit seeks damages from the city and Officer Richter, and demanded a trial by jury.
King’s conversation with Officer Patrick Spradlin about relations between officers and the black community while she was being transported to the Travis County Jail also came to light in July. APD Chief Art Acevedo said then the department was conducting a full review of Richter’s use of force and Spradlin’s comments.
RAW VIDEO: Arrest of Breaion King: (First throw happens around one minute into video)
RAW VIDEO: Breaion King with Officer Patrick Spradlin:
RAW VIDEO: Officer Bryan Richter's version of events:
RAW VIDEO: Breaion King's version of events: