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Lawsuit Alleges Excessive Force Against Dearborn Man: Video

Attorneys for Ali Baydoun have filed a civil rights complaint, which they plan to follow up with the federal lawsuit alleging excessive force, false arrest, and assault and battery.

Ali Baydoun's attorneys allege excessive force in an altercation between their client and Dearborn police last December. (Screenshot: Dearborn Police das-cam video via YouTube)
Ali Baydoun's attorneys allege excessive force in an altercation between their client and Dearborn police last December. (Screenshot: Dearborn Police das-cam video via YouTube)

Dearborn police say they’ve cleared department personnel of using unnecessary force in their review of an encounter last December of a man who was riding a bicycle in a crime-ridden neighborhood, but that won’t likely stop a civil lawsuit planned by the man’s lawyers.

The review came after attorneys for Ali Baydoun filed a civil rights complaint against the police department and plan to follow it up with a federal lawsuit alleging excessive force, false arrest, and assault and battery, WXYZ, Channel 7 reports.

The case received attention after the Arab American News posted a police dashcam video of the arrest on YouTube after obtaining it from the Law Office of Cyril Hall, which is representing Baydoun in the expected lawsuit.

The video shows a physical encounter that resulted when Ali Baydoun was patted down for weapons. Baydoun’s attorneys say that he had stopped to fix a chain in his bicycle and police approached him for no good reason. He was riding his bicycle home from his job as a dishwasher at Mango’s, a local hookah lounge, tht doesn’t close until 3 a.m. on busy nights.

City: Video Doesn't Show Full Story

However, the city said in a statement that the video doesn’t show the circumstances that attracted officers’ attention or convey the full context of the situation.

In a statement, the city said:

“ … What attracted the officer’s attention to this individual incident is not

given on the video. Mr. Beydoun [sic] was not dressed properly for the 20 degree weather that December morning. Despite riding his bicycle in the street, his bike did not have a light and he disregarded several stop signs.

“Mr. Beydoun [sic] was on a bike at 4:47 a.m. in a neighborhood that has experienced auto thefts and break-ins. It is common for criminals to use a bike when traveling to an area to steal cars. Autos have been stolen in cold weather when owners start them, but leave them unattended to warm up.

“Mr. Beydoun [sic] could not produce an I.D. when asked to do so by the officer, nor could he answer where he had come from. The officer then indicated that he was going to conduct a pat-down for weapons. That is when Mr. Beydoun [sic] began to resist and pull away from the officer.”

Baydoun is “mentally challenged,” his attorneys said, and speaks only broken English. He emigrated from Lebanon six years ago.

However, the city said in its statement that a “family member told police that despite his behavior during the incident and his lack of ability to clearly communicate with officers, he did not take medications, did not have a mental health diagnosis or have a known mental illness.”

The attorneys say that Baydoun was drug out of the dash-cam’s view, but can still be heard screaming as officers scream for him to stop fighting. Several more police ars responded and officers huddled around Baydoun, who was still pinned to the ground.

He was eventually handcuffed and placed in a police vehicle. He was not arrested, but was taken to Oakwood Hospital. His attorney says the trip to the hospital was for treatment of injuries sustained in the incident, but the city said he wasn’t injured, but was transported there for a mental health evaluation.

Baydoun claims he suffered from back injuries, facial injuries and emotional distress as a result of the altercation.

Julie May 09, 2014 at 11:46 AM
Shameful. This poor young man. I just can't imagine. What is the police department hiring? Oh, and instead of discipline, they clear all of the officers? Be prepared to pay even more, Dearborn, because you have a department that allows this to happen and doesn't take appropriate action.
Tom B May 09, 2014 at 01:44 PM
There have been a rash of cars being broken into, lately. They have the right to question. Police don't know if someone has mental problems and we don't know all of the circumstances. So lets see the facts before we condemn anyone.
Ed Smith May 09, 2014 at 06:06 PM
There are plenty of people for all kinds of reasons who have barriers to communication, the police should never be able to use that as an excuse to beat someone. My son has autism and doesn't always respond to spoken or other social cues --if the police decide he isn't dressed right will they beat him up too? Disgusting there was no discipline of these officers --this is why police are more and more seen as thugs, even if "they aren't all like that" it seems they always get "cleared." That is not a constitutional republic, it is a police state and because it is more and more a trend, this unconstitutional and brutal use of public force, it is frightening for the future of our country.
Joseph Borrajo May 09, 2014 at 07:30 PM
Recently released statistic- One out of every one hundred Americans suffer from a variety of mental health issues. The next incident can much closer to home. P3
Marium Wilke May 11, 2014 at 11:31 AM
15 seconds of tape from a TV station doesn't tell the whole story..I feel our Dearborn Police Dept.does a very good job with the diversity in our city..When all that criticize the way our police handle their job then that is when they should try it for a day....There are exceptions to procedures which are handled by the law...But what happen to the idea if you've done nothing wrong then what do you fear..What is a person with a mental problem doing out on a bike that early in the morning with out supervision...There was a man in my block that was out looking in peoples windows in the morning hours..He was an ex abitionus..The Dearborn Police took him in to custody on a neighbors porch looking in her window..So I was so thank full for my Dearborn Police...It's so easy to cry abuse...I am so glad we have a Good Police Dept.....Who answeres my calls for help..and has always been there for me no matter what the situation is..I thank you for all your service to my city..

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