War Veteran Files Federal Lawsuit Against Metro Police - 8 News NOW

War Veteran Files Federal Lawsuit Against Metro Police

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George Pappas said a Metro Police officer caused him injuries after throwing him to the ground. George Pappas said a Metro Police officer caused him injuries after throwing him to the ground.

LAS VEGAS -- A World War two veteran who said he was roughed up by a Metro Police officer filed a lawsuit claiming he was handcuffed and slammed to the ground because of a 311 call.

George Pappas and his wife of 64 years, Sippin, moved to Las Vegas last year.

The couple was looking for peace and quiet, but he said all that changed when Metro came knocking on their door.

Pappas said the officer explained they had been dispatched to his house because of a 311 call. George said neither of them called and then the officer asked to speak to George's wife.

"I opened the door, he stood by the wall and I was at the door, and we talked for a little bit and then he said that he had to check to see if everybody wasOK in the house," Pappas said. "I said, 'My wife is very ill, I can't let you see her,' so he marched me out and said, 'You are going down,' by grabbing my hand, putting the handcuffs on the left hand, and throwing me on the ground."

Pappas said the officer gave no reason for the rough-up, but the result was bruises down his arms, back, and hands. Medical records show his back was injured along with parts of his spine.

George's wife said the officers eventually let her husband out of the cuffs, but didn't arrest Pappas. She said the Metro officers didn't take a report.

"I was shocked," she said. "I open the gate and there are three squad cars, and George is handcuffed. I want people to be treated carefully, not just abusive. Give people a chance before you do something like that."

The Pappas' have filed a federal lawsuit alleging police violated their civil rights and inflicted emotional distress and assault.

Attorney Amanda Connor is representing the Pappas' in their suit and points to a systemic problem with Metro Police and its officers.

"Unfortunately, in our city there is an issue with police using excessive force against the citizens, for instance in 2011 there were over 1,000 complaints of excessive force," Connor said.

According to Metro Police in 2011, there were more than 1,400 reports of excessive force by police. Internal Affairs found only 57 reports had legitimate claims.

George said he has respect for the police and just hopes that the lawsuit sends a message.

Metro Police would not speak on the case, saying it's their policy not to comment on pending litigation.

8NewsNow has requested to see the dispatch records from the day of the alleged incident but so far they have yet to supply the records.

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