Vallejo to pay $300,000 to Stanford grad tackled while recording police
The city of Vallejo has agreed to pay $300,000 to a man who was tackled by a police officer that he had recorded making a traffic stop.
Adrian Burrell, a Stanford graduate, filmmaker and U.S. Marine veteran, had filed an excessive force lawsuit against the city's police department after being brought to the ground by officer David McLaughlin in 2019.
The video shows officer McLaughlin holding a motorcycle rider at gunpoint in Burrell's driveway. The motorcyclist was Burrell's cousin.
Burrell filmed the interaction from his porch.
McLaughlin smashed his face and swung him into a pole because he refused to "get back" while the officer made the traffic stop, Burrell has said.
Burrell was handcuffed and released without being arrested. He has said he suffered a concussion.
According to the Vallejo Sun, Burrell said he will use his settlement money to "seed the founding of a non-profit organization that will provide the families of individuals who are affected by police violence, and the survivors of community violence time and space to heal."
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"No amount of money can give back what was taken from me during this violent assault nor during the dehumanizing, patronizing and disrespectful litigation process," Burrell said in a statement.
Stanford recently invited Burrell back as their 2022 Institute for Diversity in the Arts visiting artist.
McLaughlin has been a Vallejo police officer since 2014 and was previously in the Oakland Police Department. McLaughlin has previously been sued for alleged civil rights violations.
In 2014, he was named in a suit alleging that he and another officer pulled over Frederick Cooley without cause, held him at gunpoint and searched his car.
The complaint alleges they falsified a police report saying that Cooley was in possession of a controlled substance, but the Solano County District Attorney's Office later abandoned those charges. The civil case was dismissed after Cooley died.
McLaughlin has also been involved in two shootings since joining Vallejo police. He and Officer Matt Komoda fired on a suspect who was allegedly driving at them before crashing into a parked car on Aug. 31, 2016. No one was injured.
On Aug. 2, 2017, Komoda and McLaughlin were two of five officers who shot and killed Jeffrey Barboa after a pursuit into Richmond.
Police rammed Barboa's car to disable it. Barboa got out of the car with a machete and the officers shot him. His death was later ruled to be a suicide.