Suit filed over treatment of railroad worker during pullover by Walnut Ridge Police Officer
“Any weapon or anything like that “asks Walnut Ridge Police officer Matt Mercado.
Adam Finley of Smithville Arkansas is suing the city of Walnut Ridge for damages, after he was allegedly harassed and assaulted by a Walnut Ridge police officer during a traffic stop in December of 2016. This video footage taken by officer body cam shows the officer verbally assaulting Finley, before shoving him, and putting him in handcuffs.
Mark Rees is representing Finley.“I think the officer acted certainly inappropriately and wrongly arrested my client and was somewhat abusive to my client”, said Rees.
Eventually officer Matthew Mercado released Finley without issuing him a citation. Shortly thereafter, Finley went to the Walnut Ridge police station to file a complaint. To Finley’s surprise, he was cited.
Walnut Ridge Police Chief Chris Kirksey told Finley he was being charged, “ I just got off the phone with the prosecuting attorney and explained to him exactly what happed in this situation. He advised me to write you a citation for both, Obstruction of a Governmental Operation and refusal to submit to arrest.”
The Rees firm is seeking compensation for Finley’s physical and emotional abuse.
Rees says that the city should have taken on some kind of action, taken his complaint, acted like they really cared about him and they did nothing.”
Now Mark Rees says the Adam Finley versus Walnut Ridge lawsuit is less about money and more about sending a message to officers. For them to be aware of a potential abuse in power. And for their superiors, to hold them accountable for their actions.”
Rees says, “the civil lawsuit is certainly to protect my client and also citizens in public. You want bad police officers to know that if they do things that are certainly unconstitutional. They’re going to have to answer to it.”
Officer Mercado was not fired, but instead allowed to resign. The city of Walnut Ridge gained representation from the Arkansas Municipal League. It could take more than a year for the suit to reach a resolution.
Here is a link to the raw uncut Walnut Ridge Police cop camera. Be warned the language could be considered offensive. If children are in the listening area, you may wish them to leave.
Walnut Ridge Police Officer Matthew Mercado pulls over Adam Finley near the railroad crossing on US 63. What follows is video from the officers Body Camera. Be aware that the language is explicit and may not be suitable for some.
Walnut Ridge Police VIdeo 1, Finley
Walnut Ridge Police Video 2