Court social worker sues Akron, Summit County for alleged excessive force in 2020 arrest—Akron Beacon Journal
A court-appointed social worker has filed a federal lawsuit claiming his rights were violated and excessive force was used when he was arrested in September 2020 while trying to access a court building.
Curtis Williams claims he was beaten, tackled, tased, handcuffed and arrested, with charges filed against him ultimately dismissed. He said he was trying to get into a court building to use the restroom.
Williams, who is Black, filed a civil rights lawsuit this week in U.S. District Court against the city of Akron, Summit County, a Summit County judge, several sheriff deputies, and a clerk in the sheriff’s office. His claims include excessive force, malicious prosecution, and fabrication and spoilation of evidence.
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A visiting judge in Akron Municipal Court dismissed the charges against Williams in May 2021 because of a speedy trial issue.
[Williams’s attorney Peter] Pattakos said this situation could have been avoided if [the judge] had a 30-second conversation with Williams about who he was and why he was trying to get into the building. If the judge was concerned, he said, she could have involved the deputies in this discussion.
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“We made every reasonable effort to resolve this dispute amicably but the county hasn’t offered a penny, so we are left to seek relief in the courts,” Pattakos said.