The Richmond Register

January 19, 2014

Former deputy, jailer candidate sued in excessive-force case

Civil matter slated for March trial

By Sarah Hogsed
Register News Writer

RICHMOND — A former sheriff’s deputy is facing a March trial in a civil lawsuit that alleges he used excessive force during a teenager’s arrest.

Andre Patterson was sued in 2012 both individually and in his capacity as a Madison County deputy sheriff. The federal judge lifted the seal on the case last week, and the plaintiff’s name is now public record.

Patterson filed this week to run as a Democrat in the county jailer’s race. He resigned from the sheriff’s office prior to becoming a candidate.

The trial in Lexington originally was set for Jan. 27 but was rescheduled earlier this month to March 10.

Justin Martin states in the lawsuit that he was arrested June 14, 2011, at the Moberly Shell Mart. He was a juvenile at the time but is now over the age of 18.

Martin was charged with breaking into several cars and stealing credit cards, which he was attempting to use at the gas station.

The sheriff’s department was tipped off by a clerk that Martin was trying to use the stolen cards, and Patterson with Deputy Tyler Cole were sent to the gas station.

After they arrived, the deputies escorted Martin and another man outside and questioned them, according to court documents.

Martin states that he admitted the cards were stolen but told Patterson he would not speak anymore. At that point, Martin said Patterson grabbed his shirt and applied pressure while making threatening statements such as saying he would “demolish” him, the suit alleges.

Martin claims Patterson then began choking him around the neck using a “choke-hold” with his arm, the lawsuit states.

Patterson maintained the pressure around Martin’s neck while dragging him toward the cruiser, according to Martin, who states he lost consciousness.

When he came to, he was laying on the ground and his left arm hurt, the suit states. He was taken to the Madison County Detention Center where he later was released to his mother.

His mother, Karen Tackett, took Martin to a hospital where he was diagnosed with a fractured arm, according to the lawsuit.

Martin also was charged with resisting arrest, which he denied Oct. 6, 2011, in a juvenile court proceeding. He testified that he did not resist at all, but the court found him delinquent of resisting arrest, according to the lawsuit.

Patterson has denied the excessive force allegation. He has testified that after he told Martin he was under arrest, the young man tried to “pull away, became uncooperative, and then struggled all the way from his mother’s car to the officer’s cruiser,” according to court documents.

Patterson claims that Martin fought against being placed in the cruiser and that “he ultimately had to drag (Martin) to get him in the car.”

The deputy said after they reached the cruiser, he let Martin go and threatened to use his Taser.

“Thereafter, (Martin) became compliant and was arrested without further incident,” according to the suit.

Martin states in a trial brief that settlement negotiations in the matter have “proved futile.” He initially demanded $155,000, but came down to a final demand of $50,000. The defendant’s counter offer was $2,000.

Patterson is represented by attorney D. Barry Stilz of Lexington. Martin’s attorney is Joshua Kidd, who formerly practiced in Richmond but has since relocated to Stillwater, Okla.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@richmondregister.com or 624-6694.