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US Policeman Charged in Attack on Indian Visitor

  • VOA News

Sureshbhai Patel is shown in a bed at Huntsville Hospital in Huntsville, Ala., in this photo released by his son, Chirag Patel, Feb. 7, 2015.

Sureshbhai Patel is shown in a bed at Huntsville Hospital in Huntsville, Ala., in this photo released by his son, Chirag Patel, Feb. 7, 2015.

A police officer in the U.S. state of Alabama has been charged with assault after he threw a 57-year-old man from India to the ground and injured him.

Police said the officer slammed Sureshbhai Patel, who doesn't speak English, to the ground face-first when he didn't respond to commands.

The officer, Eric Parker, is being fired in connection with the Feb. 6 incident. The FBI said it also was investigating.

Video recorded by a police car's dashboard camera shows two police officers approaching Patel as he walked in his son's neighborhood in the town of Madison. When the police confront him, Patel says "no English" and appears to try to walk away. One officer pulls Patel's arms behind his back and slams him into the ground.

Shortly before the confrontation, police had received a phone call that a "suspicious person" was wandering around the neighborhood.

Patel had only recently traveled to the United States to visit his son and help care for his grandson.

Patel has sued, accusing the officers of racism. The complaint says Patel needed surgery to relieve pressure on his spinal cord following the incident.

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