South Dakota man was beaten by officers while he tried to visit a sick family member

Feb 25, 2020 1:10 AM ET

Some situations that cause police to use violence involve only minor infractions of the law. It is possible that victims can even have a good reason for violating traffic laws at times. 

A Native American Tribal Officer was beaten by two police officers in South Dakota after rushing to the side of a dying relative.


Man is beaten and detained when he attempted to visit his dying mother

The incident began when the victim attempted to speed to the nursing home where she was staying in the town of Wagner. When he arrived at the home, he was approached by two police officers. He tried to explain the urgency of the situation to them and walked away. The officers verbally commanded the man to stop again.

In the moments after this initial verbal interaction, the officers claim they told him that they did not believe his story. They approached the victim, slammed him on the ground, hit him with a shot from a taser, and handcuffed him. Over the next 45 minutes, the victim was detained while a Wager police chief arrived. His mother died inside of the home while he was being held by the officers.

One officer involved was from the Wagner department and another was from the South Dakota Highway Patrol. The victim’s daughter later posted photos on social media that showed multiple lacerations to his face and head area. Local authorities in Wagner claim that the two officers were placed on administrative leave while the incident is investigated. The victim’s chapter of Yankton Sioux Tribe also released a statement through their business and claims department condemning the actions of the officers. The chairman of the tribe says that this was a clear case of excessive use of force.


How does a police brutality lawsuit proceed after a situation like this?

After an incident of police brutality, there are a number of ways that an attorney can prove the officers acted outside of their legitimate authority by handing out an illegal beating. There are various cases from the U.S. Supreme Court and federal statutes which have been used by lawyers as the basis for filing cases against police departments. Due to the language used in these documents, police officers and government employees are scrutinized for any use of force or other illegal actions that unfairly deprive citizens of their civil rights. The attorney will use various kinds of evidence to prove that a police beating was unnecessary, and that the victim should be compensated for medical treatment and other losses.


Get help from local attorneys who focus on suing police departments

If you need to bring a police brutality lawsuit against officers anywhere in the state of South Dakota, contact Ogborn, Mihm, and Quaintance. They can speak with you and provide advice.

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Ogborn Mihm Quaintance, PROF. L.L.C.
110 S. Phillips Ave
Suite 100
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
Phone: 605.432.8900

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