A former Chargers defensive back has filed a lawsuit, saying two San Diego cops violated his civil rights, broke his arm, and led to the end of his football career.
According to Lyndsay Winkley of the San Diego Union-Tribune, Michael Lee accused officers of arresting him without probable cause on May 28, as he was waiting for a ride outside a bar in the Gaslamp District. He claims two officers told him to leave the area, he walked away, and they approached him again. He said the officers told him they were going to “take him in,” and then forced him to the ground and handcuffed him. During the incident, he suffered cuts, bruises, an eye injury and a broken arm.
Lee, a cornerback from Fort Valley State, had been on the Chargers practice squad in 2016, and signed a future contract last January. But five days after the incident and the injury, the Chargers waived him with a non-football injury designation. He has spent time in Falcons camp in 2015 and on the Eagles practice squad. He’s not currently on a roster.
The San Diego police didn’t comment, but the city attorney’s office declined to press charges.
Lee’s lawyer called the broken arm “a devastating injury,” which required 16 screws to repair.
“[Lee] incurred substantial medical bills, lost earnings, lost earning capacity and severe emotional distress,” the lawsuit states. “In addition, (Lee) was disabled from playing professional football, and was deprived of the opportunity to pursue his life-long dream of playing in the NFL.”
He is seeking unspecified damages.