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Texas City officers sued, accused of using excessive force

TEXAS CITY, Texas – A Texas City man is suing the city and two of its police officers after he said he was unnecessarily beaten by them after being pursued in an Oct. 8 incident.

Brian Miller and his lawyer, Randall Kallinen, filed the federal civil rights case Thursday in Galveston County.

"This kind of gratuitous violence has no place in civilized society," said Kallinen. "Maybe this lawsuit will bring back professionalism to the Texas City Police Department."

Miller's father and neighbor met with representatives of the news media Friday.

"It happened in my driveway. He brought my truck home and the guy stopped him over a parole violation," said Ed Miller, Brian's father.

Kallinen showed dashcam video.

"Brian had given up after a short chase. He got on the ground, laid on the ground, as the video shows. When one of the officers came up with his gun and smacks him on the head three separate times," Kallinen said.

The lawsuit names the city of Texas City, Sgt. B. Macik and Officer R. Dricks as defendants. It alleges that Macik was pursuing Miller and when Miller jumped out of the car, Dricks "clubbed Brian in the head three times with the butt of a pistol, breaking Brian's jaw and giving Brian a concussion. While Brian was still laying on the ground, Macik tased Brian, causing further injury."

The lawsuit also indicates the younger Miller required "extensive surgery" and had to have his "jaw wired shut as a result of the attack."

"It just breaks your heart and he spent the rest of the night in my house and the next morning he was in such pain, we took him to [the hospital] and they did surgery on his head down there," said Ed Miller.

In the dashcam video, one can hear the man being arrested screaming.

Ed Miller's neighbor, Linda Cooper, was there that night. She stepped outside her home and said police knew she was watching. She said there were eight or so officers present that night.

"I could hear him screaming and groaning every time they hit him," Cooper said. "And every time two more policemen walked up then he started with the screaming."

Ed Miller said that afterward his son was taken to get medical help and eventually dropped back off. Records show Brian Miller was later arrested on Oct. 31 by the Galveston County Sheriff's Office on suspicion of evading arrest with a motor vehicle on Oct. 8.

The elder Miller said it all started with a parole violation.

"He had a warrant issued for his parole violation. That's what his original stop was for," the father said.

Brian Miller's record shows a history of drug possession and driving while intoxicated. Ed Miller said, though, that his son did not have to get treated the way he did.

"He didn't resist," Ed said.

Texas City police released this statement:

"The City of Texas City Police Department has strict policies prohibiting its police officers from using excessive force against anyone with whom they come into contact. These strict policies are underscored in the City’s and the Texas City Police Department’s policies, training, and practices. Every incident of this kind in which force is used is taken seriously, and subject to review by the department. An officer is subject to discipline up to and including possible termination for violating such policies.

"In this situation, Officer Richard Dricks’ conduct was reviewed, and he was subject to discipline, which is under appeal. The Texas City Police Department also referred this incident to the Galveston County District Attorney’s Office of Public Integrity, which declined charges after reviewing all of the facts and circumstances.

"Being that civil litigation is pending no further comments will be made."