The taxpayers of Phenix, Georgia are now on the hook after city council voted Tuesday to award $275,000 to a woman punched in the face by police last year.
Elizabeth Coty-Green was seeking $1 million for the May 18, 2014, incident in which she claimed Phenix City Police Officer Mark Cameron punched her in face, fracturing her left eye socket.
Green, who was not present for Tuesdays meeting, addressed the city council last June.
She complained the police report of the incident, which occurred outside her Willow Trace Drive home, said she was arrested without incident or injury.
Green said Cameron came to her home about 10:15 p.m., with her daughter-in-law, who wanted to collect some belongings she’d left there after a fight with her husband.
Green let her get one bag before suggesting she return when her husband was there, to make sure they accurately exchanged property.
Green said Cameron interjected that the daughter-in-law would get her things that night or he would arrest the homeowner, who replied, “Arrest me then.”
Green said her husband stepped outside with Cameron to ease the tension, but when he came back in, the officer forced his way in behind him before attempting to drag her (Green) outside.
When her husband tried to stop him, the officer arrested and handcuffed him, Green said.
Cameron had her on the floor on her back, with one handcuff on her right wrist as he tried to put the other cuff on her left arm, which she kept pulling away, she said. That’s when he reared back and punched her in the face rendering her unconscious.
When she came to, a police lieutenant, who was standing over her said, “You’re under arrest,” the woman said.
She was charged with felony assault and with misdemeanor resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. Her husband was charged with resisting arrest also. They are still facing those charges.
Green said she suffered a fractured and blackened eye and had to undergo surgery.
Green’s lawsuit alleged trespassing, assault and battery, false arrest, excessive force and breaking and entering.
Police violated BGreen’s right to defend her home, and to “defend herself against an unlawful intrusion and against a false and unwarranted arrest,” lawyers for the woman said.
The city council voted unanimously 5-0 to settle all civil complaints by Green against the city, including medical bills, with no public discussion.
Police say officer Cameron has been disciplined, but have declined to disclose how.
He remains on the force.