Man says Huntington police officers attacked him

By Kyla Asbury | Apr 23, 2013

HUNTINGTON - A man is suing the City of Huntington after he claims he was attacked by Huntington police officers.

Ronald Lusk and four John Does, who are all Huntington Police Department officers employed by the City of Huntington, were also named as defendants in the suit.

On Aug. 25, 2010, Zachary Grove was arrested for several misdemeanors and was taken to Huntington Police Department, according to a complaint filed April 17 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Grove claims while being processed, police officers began yelling at him and he backed away, but they continued to advance toward him.

Without any provocation, one of the officers grabbed Grove by the throat, capstunned him and slammed him against the wall, knocking him unconscious, according to the suit.

Grove claims despite being incapable of defending himself, three officers repeatedly punched him in the head, face and body and, after the beating, left him unconscious and bleeding on the floor.

During the beating, at least two other HPD officers watched and did nothing to stop the beating, according to the suit.

Grove claims although he was severely injured, the officers did not render medical care to him or summon medical assistance from healthcare providers.

Since the time of the incident, HPD and its officers have tried to conceal and hide what actually transpired that evening and one of the arrest warrants states that Grove "began moving toward officers in an aggressive manner," when video shows that Grove moved away from officers and not toward them, according to the suit.

Grove claims the defendants violated his civil rights pursuant to the West Virginia Constitution and the U.S. Constitution.

Lusk and the unknown officers committed battery on Grove, causing him injuries from the unprovoked beating, according to the suit.

Grove claims the defendants were negligent in the performance of their duties within the scope of their employment, which caused him severe injuries.

The defendants' actions were reprehensible; willful and wanton; malicious; and in blatant disregard of the rights owed to Grove, according to the suit.

Grove is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. He is being represented by Richard W. Weston and Connor Robertson of Weston Law Office and Courtenay Craig.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge F. Jane Hustead.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 13-C-252

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