Man shot at by now-fired officer files lawsuit against BRPD
BATON ROUGE - A man who was accused and then cleared of firing a gun at a Baton Rouge police officer has filed suit against that officer and the Baton Rouge Police Department.
The lawsuit filed on behalf of Raheem Howard alleges Officer Yuseff Hamadeh used excessive force in a traffic stop last year. The lawsuit claims Hamadeh rear-ended Howard's vehicle as it came to a stop and the officer stepped out of his unit shouting "I am going to f---ing kill you."
Howard claims he ran away in fear for his life, prompting Hamadeh to give chase. According to the suit, Hamadeh then entered a home without permission and fired a shot at Howard through a window.
Hamadeh later claimed he was shot at by Howard, but evidence suggested that only one shot was fired by the officer. Authorities also never found any weapon in possession of Howard or his passenger.
The suit goes on to say Hamadeh's account of events led to a manhunt which labeled Howard armed and dangerous, calling it a search that put his life in "extreme jeopardy." Howard later turned himself in and was booked on attempted murder and weapons charges. After his arrest, Howard's lawyers say police tried illicit a confession from him, with an officer claiming the dash camera showed Howard with a gun.
Hamadeh was fired last year after District Attorney Hillar Moore dropped the charges against Howard, citing a lack of evidence. An internal investigation revealed Hamadeh's body camera was turned off and audio from his vehicle's rearview camera.
Howard has since been released from jail.
Last month, the Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board overturned Hamadeh's firing, saying the department failed to follow proper protocols during a lie detector test.
The department said it planned to appeal the board's decision.