Photo by Associated Press
Three Occupy Wall Street protesters have netted a sizable settlement from the city after filing a lawsuit saying they were brutalized by police officers.
Sandra Fields, 68, and Sean McKeown, 33, were each holding one end of a banner on September 25, 2012, when Fields was apparently attacked by Lieutenant Stephen Latalardo. According to the suit, Latalardo slammed Fields from behind, causing her head to hit the ground. A video shot at the scene shows Latalardo smirkingly telling Fields that she was being arrested for “displaying a banner.”
“I was in shock,” Fields told the Daily News. “I was dumbfounded and really in pain.”
Thanks in part to video corroborating her claim, Fields has been awarded $75,000. McKeown will receive a $15,000 settlement, and a third party, Eric-John Russell, will receive $52,000 after successfully fighting a summons for “blocking traffic,” despite the fact that he was shoved off the sidewalk and into the street by cops themselves.
In 2012, three OWS protesters reached a settlement with the city for $50,000 over what they described as a “thought crime” arrest.