On Wednesday, a federal appeals court ruled there is enough evidence for the civil rights lawsuit against former Madison Police Officer Eric Parker and the city of Madison to move forward.
After a district court denied Parker's request for summay judgment in the case, it was appealed. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that decision and now the case will proceed with a jury trial.
The civil suit claims Eric Parker used excessive force and violated the civil rights of 62 year-old Sureshbai Patel. Patel was partially paralyzed in an encounter with Parker in February 2015, as he walked through his son’s Madison neighborhood. Video from dash cameras show the take down of Patel who was visiting his family from India. According to Parker, Patel resisted arrest before he took him to the ground.
Parker was acquitted of criminal charges after two federal trials resulted in hung juries. According to the city of Madison, Parker resigned from the Madison Police Department on November 30, 2016.
Patel's attorney Hank Sherrod said they are pleased with the ruling and they are one step closer on the road to justice.
WAAY 31 reached out to the city of Madison for comment and a spokesperson told us the city does not have a statement to provide at this time.
In the decision from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, it states "the district court did not err in denying summary judgment to Parker and the City. Neither we nor the dashboard-camera video recordings can resolve the parties’ factual discrepancies about whether Patel was resisting before Parker took him to the ground. For these reasons, we affirm in all respects the district court’s denial of summary judgment."