Judge: Stun Gun Lawsuit Against Moorhead Officer Can Proceed
MOORHEAD, Minn. (AP) - A federal judge say a lawsuit can proceed against a Moorhead police officer accused of using excessive force when he used a Taser on a 75-year-old man.
Officers went to the home of James Van Raden for a welfare check in 2013. In his ruling, U.S. District Judge Donovan Frank says Van Raden was "obviously in a mentally fragile state" when he refused to leave his home and Officer Steven Larsen used the stun gun on him.
Frank ruled a reasonable juror could conclude Larsen's use of the Taser was unreasonable. Claims against two other Moorhead officers and allegations of false arrest were dismissed.
Larsen's attorney believes jurors will agree with the defense that Van Raden kicked at the officers, which would make use of the Taser reasonable.