PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, Md. — A lawsuit that alleges St. George’s County police are responsible for crashing into a man riding an all-terrain vehicle is scheduled to start Monday.
Michael Lewis seeks damages in excess of $75,000 in a lawsuit accusing police officers of using excessive force during a traffic stop that occurred in March 2013. Lewis’s attorneys say he suffered from a concussion, bone fractures, bruising, and other injuries.
Footage from a police cruiser’s dashboard camera appears to show Officer Anthony Ayers Jr. slamming his cruiser head on into the man’s ATV in a crash the lawsuit says police deliberately caused. The video shows Lewis being launched into the air and onto the windshield of a police cruiser before hitting the ground.
Video available below:
While in traffic court, Ayers testified under oath that he had never seen the dashcam video of the incident, and that his vehicle was fully stopped during the crash. It was later discovered that Ayers lied about watching the video, which clearly shows his cruiser moving when the collision occurred. Ayers has not been charged with perjury.
Attorneys hired by the county are still arguing that the collision was an accident. The Washington Post reports a statement given by the county’s attorneys:
“Having just departed the scene of an ATV accident, Ayers and [Police Officer Shea] Jefferson decided to stop Plaintiff to advise him to wear a helmet and to get off the road,” according to court filings submitted by Prince George’s attorneys. “When Ayers saw Plaintiff drive past Jefferson’s cruiser, he also crossed the center line of the roadway in order to block Plaintiff’s path and the two vehicles collided.”