Bridgeport, CT — Officer Clive Higgins of the Bridgeport police department,was indicted in August for stomping a subdued man’s head and neck during an arrest. Higgins was accused of using unreasonable force during the course of Orlando Lopez-Soto’s arrest on May 20, 2011, in Beardley Park.
Higgins, 49, was found not guilty Wednesday by a federal jury.
“We respect the jury’s verdict and the criminal justice process,” the U.S. Attorney’s office said in a statement. “Our office will continue to prioritize civil rights investigations. We thank the FBI and the prosecutors for their hard work on this case.”
When Higgins was first indicted in August, the US Attorney’s office put out this statement, “The use of unreasonable force during an arrest is not only a clear violation of an individual’s civil rights, but also gravely undermines the community’s trust in law enforcement.”
Video of the incident surfaced nearly a year after the arrest which is when the family of Lopez-Soto filed a lawsuit against the department. With the compelling video showing three officers brutalizing an incapacitated Lopez-Soto, the city agreed to pay out $198,000.
In November of 2013, a $10 million federal lawsuit was filed against the department claiming that the problem of brutality within the Bridgeport police department is systemic and police officials closed their eyes to a rampage by three rogue officers allowing them to leave a nearly two-year trail of abuse and brutality.
In the video, the two officers, Elson Morales and Joseph Lawlor, can be seen kicking the victim repeatedly while he is on the ground. Higgins then arrives in his cruiser, gets out and appears to stomp the downed suspect around the head and neck.
Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/cop-guilty-caught-video-stomping-subdued-mans-face/#DAJbSdSsFL2X4q8s.99