Man sues after police officer utilizes taser

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Sep. 8, 2010, 5:50am

LUFKIN-A Tyler county resident has filed a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the Taser, after he was tased by a police offer for noncompliance.

Claiming violations of his civil rights, Mark Anthony Hadnot filed suit against the city of Woodville, Police Officer John A. Fuller and Taser International Inc. on Aug. 30 in the Eastern District of Texas, Lufkin Division.

According to the lawsuit, Hadnot was being questioned by the officer for several minutes at his home. Hadnot states he informed the officer several times that he needed to use the restroom. Finally, he stood up to enter his residence and the officer tased him. Hadnot fell and hit his head.

Officer Fuller is accused of using unreasonable, unnecessary and excessive force while arresting Hadnot. According to the court records, there was no arrest warrant for Hadnot, no probable cause of his arrest and no legal cause for seizure.

The city of Woodville is accused of allowing policies to continue that result in "outrageous and excessive force," failing to investigative complaints of excessive force and failing to discipline or retrain officers who wrongfully utilized excessive force.

Hadnot argues "Taser International should have taught that a Taser is to be utilized only in cases of self-defense and the defense of others and that it is never to be used as a compliance tool and that its use may cause serious injury and/or death."

Defendant Taser International is accused of negligent design, marketing and misrepresentation. Hadnot states the Taser is defective in that it is capable of an electrical shot that can cause death and serious bodily injury as opposed to the non-lethal and non-harmful shock that it is advertised to provide.

The plaintiff is seeking actual damages for pain and mental anguish, physical pain, emotional pain, torment and suffering, punitive damages, interest, court costs and attorneys fees.

Hadnot is represented by William B. Hall of The Owen Law Firm in Conroe. Jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Ron Clark is assigned to the case.

Case No. 9:10cv00117

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