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Suit: Robbins police officers used excessive force, caused miscarriage

Updated: October 5, 2012 9:00AM



A woman who was two months pregnant when she was arrested by Robbins police is suing the department, alleging officers used force so excessive that she had a miscarriage.

Cook County resident Cherese Morris claims she was walking down a street while talking on her cell phone in October 2011 when three Robbins police officers approached, knocked the phone out of her hand and placed her under arrest for no reason, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in Cook County Circuit Court.

As police pulled Morris’ hands behind her back and snapped on handcuffs, the woman claims her shoulder “popped,” causing her to scream in pain repeatedly, the suit states.

Rather than loosening the handcuffs, the suit alleges officers threw Morris facedown onto the back seat of a police car and shocked her several times with a Taser.

The jolts caused Morris to stiffen up so much that she knocked a window out of the patrol car and eventually lost consciousness, the suit said. Two weeks later, according to the court filing, she miscarried her child.

Police charged Morris with battery, criminal damage to property and resisting arrest, but Cook County prosecutors declined to prosecute her for battery and criminal damage and dropped the resisting arrest charges, the suit states.

Neither Morris or her attorney nor a spokesperson for the police department could be reached for comment Thursday night.

According to the suit, Morris attempted to file a formal complaint in August, about a year after her arrest, but was told the officers no longer worked for the department and the statute of limitations for filing her grievances had run out.

The eight-count lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of damages, alleging the officers acted with excessive force and violated Morris’ civil rights.

Robbins Police Chief Johnny Holmes is also named as a defendant. Morris and her attorney allege Holmes was negligent because his officers were poorly supervised and lacked proper training.



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