Basement town has agreed to pay a man who was sprayed with pepper spray and arrested, $ 200,000 after he videotaped a police officer who ran his son on a wide right turn, according to the father’s lawyer .
Marco Puente filed a lawsuit in Fort Worth Federal Court last month against two basement police officers charged with excessive violence and illegal arrest in the August 15 incident.
According to the officers’ body camera, Marco Puente’s son Dillon was won over by Sgt. Blake Shimanek for a wide right turn.
Dillon Puente’s father soon appeared at the scene in a separate vehicle and began videotaping what was going on across the street.
Then Shimanek ordered another officer, Ankit Tomer, to arrest the father and spray him with pepper spray. Tomer was also named in the lawsuit.
Both the father and son were sent to prison, but the police quickly dismissed the charges after examining the case and demoting Shimanek to officer.
Keller City Council scheduled a special meeting Tuesday to discuss a controversial police traffic disruption and complaints of excessive violence that led to a federal lawsuit.
Puentes attorney Scott Palmer said Sunday the two sides agreed to settle the case during a mediation session Friday when the city agreed to pay $ 200,000.
“The Puente family is delighted to have left this unfortunate and unnecessary situation behind them,” Palmer and attorney James Roberts said in a statement. “This deal will rightly compensate both Dillon and Marco.”
The statement credited Police Chief Brad Fortune with acting quickly in “solving the problems” in the case, but added, “It is disappointing that these officers are still employed in the basement police department.”
Keller’s Mayor Armin Mizani confirmed on Sunday that the mediation had taken place, but said he was waiting for the agreement to be signed by both sides.
The mayor declined to confirm the settlement amount was $ 200,000 but said the city itself could only pay a deductible of $ 5,000. The Texas Municipal League, which insures cities, will pay the rest, he said.
“The city plans to share details once everything is finalized,” Mizani said.
A city spokeswoman also noted that the deal has not yet been finalized, but said: “The city is pleased that a brokered settlement agreement has been reached.”
The lawsuit alleged that the sergeant targeted the younger Puente because he was of Spanish descent and wrongly believed he had drugs in his car.