Man sues Galveston for $1M over controversial 2019 arrest

GALVESTON, Texas – Donald Neely, who’s controversial arrest last year sparked outrage, filed a $1 million lawsuit on Wednesday against the city of Galveston and its police department.

In August 2019, two Galveston police officers on horseback arrested Neely and escorted him using a rope clipped to his handcuffs.

After viral photos and videos of the incident sparked outrage across the country, the department apologized for “the negative perception of this action” and said it would stop using the transportation technique.

The Texas Rangers conducted an investigation and ultimately determined that officers involved didn’t break the law.

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Neely was arrested on criminal trespassing charges, which were later dismissed, according to the lawsuit.

Neely is seeking $1 million in damages for the emotional distress caused him by the Aug. 3, 2019 arrest. He’s also claiming negligence on the part of the officers.

The lawsuit claims that the actions of two officers who arrested Neely were extreme and outrageous and caused him “embarrassment, humiliation and fear.”

“Neely felt as though he was put on display as slaves once were,” the lawsuit states. “He suffered from fear because one of the horses was acting dangerously, putting Neely in fear of being drug down the street by a run-away horse.”

Neely is demanding a trial by jury.

City officials declined on Saturday to comment about the lawsuit.

About the Author:

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team in 2019. When she’s not hard at work in the KPRC 2 newsroom, you can find Bri drinking away her hard earned wages at JuiceLand, running around Hermann Park, listening to crime podcasts or ransacking the magazine stand at Barnes & Noble.