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Banker loses $20M lawsuit against LAPD officers

A jury cleared two LAPD officers in a lawsuit alleging they beat up a banker while he was acting erratically.
January 23, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
A jury cleared two Los Angeles Police Department officers Friday in a $20-million excessive-force lawsuit alleging they beat up a former banker while he was acting erratically.

Brian Mulligan, a former bank executive, alleged he was a victim of excessive force. Mulligan testified that LAPD officers John Miller and James Nichols beat him in 2012.

The defense showed evidence that Mulligan was in a drug-induced psychotic state after snorting an amphetamine-like drug called "bath salts." Two days before his encounter with LAPD, Mulligan was recorded telling a Glendale officer he had snorted the drug. The recording was played for the jury.

Mulligan testified he later went to Eagle Rock to get medical marijuana. A parade of witnesses testified that on that May night in 2012, Mulligan was alone and yelling. They testified he was trying to open car doors and said someone was following him.

The two officers testified they responded and Mulligan passed a field sobriety test. They said Mulligan wanted to go to a motel to sleep it off. They said an hour later, he was out again in the middle of traffic trying to carjack a moving vehicle.

Mulligan's lawyer told jurors that no matter what Mulligan's mental state, he did not deserve to be beaten by what he said was a sadistic, rogue cop.

Doctors who testified differed on whether a baton caused the injuries or if it was Mulligan who violently resisted arrest and slammed his own face on the pavement.

The defense said Nichols did not even have his baton at the time of Mulligan's arrest.

Mulligan lost his job with Deutsche Bank over the incident that was highly publicized. He also had been co-chairman of Universal Pictures and chief financial officer with Seagrams Co.

A civilian oversight board found the officers' use of force to be appropriate, and a claim against the city over his lost bank job was dismissed.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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