Clinton Alford has resisting arrest charge dismissed in excessive force case

Marc Cota-Robles Image
Thursday, October 30, 2014
22-year-old man claims excessive force by LAPD; 1 of 2 charges dismissed
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A judge in Los Angeles dismissed a resisting arrest charge against a 22-year-old man who claims he suffered cuts and Taser marks at the hands of overly-aggressive LAPD officers.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A 22-year-old man said he suffered cuts and Taser marks at the hands of overly-aggressive Los Angeles Police Department officers.

Clinton Alford walks with crutches after his arrest which occurred near Avalon Boulevard and 55th Street in South Los Angeles on Oct. 16. That arrest left the involved LAPD officers on administrative leave and the focus of an excessive force investigation.

Images, released by Attorney Caree Harper, show the cuts and scrapes on Alford's body. The photos show Taser marks on his back, and stitches he received in his ear after Harper says he was repeatedly kicked in the head.

Alford did not speak in court Wednesday, but stood alongside his sister and mother.

"I'm just happy just to see my son is alive," said Valerie Washington, Alford's mother.

Harper claims her client was face down, attempting to surrender, when he was kicked repeatedly in the head.

"In broad daylight, the police feel emboldened enough to do these vicious acts of violating the suspect's rights before he has a right to get to court," Harper said.

She admits Alford initially ran from officers when they grabbed his bicycle, but she says he gave up and believes evidence will show that he was handcuffed.

She also says what happened was caught on surveillance video by a nearby business's security system. The footage has yet to be released.

"I think if Chief Charlie Beck wants to be transparent, the chief will release it," Harper said. "He has the power to do so, no matter what he says. If he wants to be transparent, he will release it."

The Los Angeles Police Department refused to comment on the ongoing investigation.

In a prior statement, Beck said, "This investigation is ongoing and there is still much that needs to be done to determine the facts of this matter, but let me be very clear, any officer that is found to abuse the public is not welcome in this department, and we will apply whatever legal or administrative means necessary to insure the community's trust without exception."

Harper said the officers should "go ahead and just take forever off from the police force."

"You almost killed my baby," Washington said.

Alford was initially charged with drug possession, for which he pleaded not guilty. A second charge of resisting arrest was dismissed Wednesday morning.

He is due back in court on Dec. 1. At that time, Harper plans to file a motion to have that surveillance video released.