Tom Johnson files suit against two Minneapolis police officers

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A jury in Minneapolis found Vikings defensive tackle Tom Johnson not guilty of disorderly conduct, trespassing and use of force last June.

Johnson was pepper-sprayed and tasered by two off-duty Minneapolis police officers before being arrested at a restaurant/nightclub in October 2014. Johnson was accused of ignoring demands to leave the establishment, but argued that the two officers were the aggressors in the altercation and took cell phone video he used in his defense in court. Johnson’s lawyer said after his acquittal that he would file a civil lawsuit and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports he has gone ahead with that filing.

The suit charges officers Patrick McCarver and John Laluzerne with “excessive force, false arrest and unreasonable seizure” among other violations. Johnson also names the city of Minneapolis as a co-defendant to the two officers and argues that “improper seizure and use of unreasonable force … was enabled and directly caused by the custom or practice of the City of Minneapolis of deliberate indifference to the use of such unreasonable force and false arrests.”

Johnson is asking for $75,000 in damages. City Attorney Susan Segal said she was reviewing the suit and Lt. Bob Kroll, head of the police union, said Johnson was looking for “special treatment because he’s a Viking.”

43 responses to “Tom Johnson files suit against two Minneapolis police officers

  1. As the Minneapolis PD has long known, it is impossible to get Vikings fans out of a buffet restaurant without multiple officers and some sort of forklift.

  2. No way, off duty cops working as bouncers abused their power and over zealously attacked someone who “didn’t respond to their orders”… this kind of thing never happens!

  3. The head of our police union is right! Cops rough up dozens of people all the time with no repercussions! Why should this time be any different? Too many of our Vikings are prima donnas!!

  4. The fact of the matter is Mr Police Chief Johnson isn’t sitting in jail because he could afford proper legal representation. He didn’t used his status as a Viking he was falsely charged, abused by the police, and found innocent in a court of law.

  5. Because cops just go around using pepper spray and tasers on people that are doing nothing wrong.

    That isn’t to suggest that Tom Johnson was breaking the law, but the cops showed up for a reason.

    We have all seen this before. Cops show up, guy the cops are there to see gets indignant, stands there, arms crossed, “I didn’t do nothing, I didn’t do nothing, I didn’t do nothing, why you harassing me, I didnt do nothing”…. Etc. Eventually, the guy who legitimately didn’t do nothing, has now created a scene, and now he isn’t following the commands of a police officer, and now he must be handled by said police officer.

    I will never understand the mentality of people that would rather make a scene, than to just obey the commands of a police officer. Congrats, you stood up for what you believe in, and your reward is pepper spray and getting shot with a taser. If the cop tells you to stop talking, you stop talking. If the cop tells you to walk away, you walk away. If the cop tells you to stand over there quietly, you stand over there quietly. I. Just. Don’t. Get. It. Sure there are DBag cops that just have an attitude problem and are looking to start something that only they can win because the law is on their side, but how dumb is the guy who falls for it? In my experience, 99% of the cops who show up, are just looking to find a conclusion to the situation, and without fail some clown isn’t smart enough to know that he is getting a free pass, and instead trades the free pass in for pepper spray and incarceration…

  6. When those chest cams for the police first came out, there was a county in California that made them mandatory for all officers. Forget which one since its not my state. Over the first three months they were in use, uses of force went down 60% and complaints about the police went down by 80%. There absolutely must be checks and balances in any system, because absolute power absolutely corrupts.

    The sad thing? Despite smackdowns such as this and the Le’Sean McCoy thing, the behavior of police officers is improving all the time – because now, they have no choice. Before chest cams, video cameras and cell phones, the illegal behavior of police officers was 10 times worse, but was considered just anecdotal, unbelieved and discredited.

  7. How dare Johnson look for special treatment because he’s a Viking? He should be treated in an unreasonable and degrading way with excessive force just like everyone else.

  8. Memo to Lt. Kroll head of Minneapolis police union;

    Johnson is not looking to get ” special treatment ” from the police.
    He already got the ” special treatment.” Look at the data and news reports. Off-duty police officers serving as bouncers can be problematic. Many cities are looking at this practice. It is not
    always the best way to curtail problems at bars.

  9. seems logical…arrested and found innocent….he feel this arrest was harsh and warranted review and is suing.

    Most likely judging by the sum he is asking for 75K this will pay for his lawyer and his food tab…..

    Pay it and be done…..

  10. vikesr4reel says:
    Apr 5, 2016 11:06 AM
    Send him to New England where he belongs with all the other cheaters and crybabies

    Cheaters?? You mean like the 8 Vikings that have been caught using PED’s since 97, or maybe you mean how the Vikings pumped in crowd noise?? No?? You must mean how the Vikings tampered with Farve in 2008. People in glass houses you hypocrite!!

  11. He was waiting for his sober ride. You don’t have to give him special treatment because he is a Viking, you give him special treatment because he is a paying customer who you just got done over serving(which is against the law). Regardless, its bad for business to treat your VIPs like that, its bad for business to treat any customer like that. And now its public.

    Nobody is chill about anything anymore, and its getting more and more difficult to find a genuinely nice person to just be cool about stuff without turning everything into some outrage or issue.

  12. Can we get rid of cops moonlighting as any sort of security? Absent that, can we stop treating them specially in that capacity? If they are a bouncer and they get punched, there’s no extra charges for hitting an off-duty cop or anything like that.

  13. vikesr4reel
    Apr 5, 2016, 11:06 AM EDT
    Send him to New England where he belongs with all the other cheaters and crybabies

    Why don’t you worry about you’re team actually winning a playoff game before you start taking shots at the Pats. Btw, remind me again did Walsh make that 27 yard field goal?!

  14. ( . Y . ) says:
    Apr 5, 2016 11:28 AM
    Because cops just go around using pepper spray and tasers on people that are doing nothing wrong.

    That isn’t to suggest that Tom Johnson was breaking the law, but the cops showed up for a reason.
    ===

    Yeah, the reason they showed up was either because they wanted to get drunk or make extra money as bouncers. Did you miss the part of the article that said they were “off-duty”?

  15. Sue those corrupted low life cops. Who the freak do they think they are? Without their uniforms they’re nothing. Go get a real life and stop messing with innocent people…

  16. Something similar to this happened to one of our players in Manitowoc County at ‘Four’, a club here that’s named for the days of the week (our schools suck and the inbred local club owner only had four digits to count). Of course, our cops and DA managed to put him away for 18 years even though the player was innocent, so I think Tom Johnson should consider himself lucky. Johnson is free now and isn’t on a second place team.

  17. Has there ever been a LT. who actually thought this cops did something wrong??

    If it weren’t for cell phone videos & citizens with cameras, cops would never be charged with anything!
    Even with video proof, they set free the majority of the time

    People don’t trust police…period
    And that comes from something…

    Decades of corruption & cover ups

  18. ( . Y . ) says:
    Apr 5, 2016 11:28 AM

    Because cops just go around using pepper spray and tasers on people that are doing nothing wrong.

    That isn’t to suggest that Tom Johnson was breaking the law, but the cops showed up for a reason.
    ————————
    What part of OFF DUTY do you fail to understand. If he did nothing wrong, and it seems he didn’t, why should he put up with harassment…

  19. Lt. Kroll is it fair to say your cops will now be looking for special treatment of exoneration?

    No one is above the law! Your cops wrongfully roughed up the innocent; the book should be thrown at them to correct their actions.

  20. There are cops that abuse their status, and gives it seems to give ALL cops a bad name.

    Just remember that there are tons of cops, that do their job the right way, relying on their training, using it the right way, and staying out of the media’s eye.

  21. Special treatment for being a viking!! That and a dollar still can’t buy a coffee at Starbucks.

    Being a viking is like a tenderized steak, beaten flat many times and never being remembered for quality. Although it is possible a tenderized steak won a trophy somewhere unlike the vikings.

    Special treatment is a joke.

  22. The funny part of the article is the mention that the player was looking for special treatment because he is a Viking.

    Talk about delusional, it would be one thing if he were a Gopher hockey player or a NBA basketball player but the Vikings? Nobody wants to be associated with a loser and there is no other NFL team that has lost more playoff games than the Vikings. Tom Johnson should count his lucky stars that he was only tased. As for the accusation that he was beaten, you would think he would be used to it by now playing for the Vikings.

  23. It’s no use arguing with these Minnesota rubes.
    They defend a moron like this, just as quickly as they do a grown man who tortures a defenseless 4 year old.

    Humorless, soulless, twisted and bitter. You’d almost feel sorry for them if they didn’t bring it all on themselves.
    Looking forward to another 55 years of banal and fruitless football for them.
    It’s exactly what they deserve.

  24. outhpackalacky says:
    Apr 5, 2016 5:50 PM
    Wait, wait, wait, a Viking in trouble with the Law? Geez, I’m shocked!

    ——
    Wait, wait, wait, a packer fan too ignorant (or too stupid) to understand that Johnson is not in trouble with the law? Geez, I’m shocked!

  25. mnfan60 says:
    Apr 5, 2016 8:36 PM
    Wait, wait, wait, a packer fan too ignorant (or too stupid) to understand that Johnson is not in trouble with the law? Geez, I’m shocked!
    ///////////////////////////////////////////

    I think the fact Lt. Bob Kroll, head of the police union, said Johnson was looking for “special treatment because he’s a Viking,” qualifies as being in trouble with the law.

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