US & World

Man ‘arrested for stealing his own car’ wins settlement

Lawrence CrosbyImage copyright CBS Chicago
Image caption Lawrence Crosby was reportedly struck at least 10 times by arresting officers

A man arrested by Illinois police for stealing what turned out to be his own car has come to an out-of-court settlement with a Chicago suburb.

Northwestern University PhD student Lawrence Crosby was 25 when the incident happened in 2015.

A woman called the police when she saw him trying to fix a loose part on his car and thought he was a thief.

Evanston City Council will vote on the final settlement next week but a lawyer said it would be $1.25m (£960,000).

Timothy Touhy, the lawyer representing Dr Crosby, revealed the sum to the Chicago Tribune newspaper.

Dr Crosby, who is African American, told CBS Chicago that he hoped the incident would raise awareness of unconscious racial stereotyping.

A lawyer for the city was quoted as saying by ABC News: “The settlement is a compromise of disputed claims and the parties have not admitted any liability or the validity of any defence in the litigation.”

According to Mr Touhy, his client was trying to repair a part of loose moulding on his car when a woman saw him and believed he was trying to steal it.

She followed him as he drove from his flat to the university and called police.

The student got out of the car arms raised when asked, but was allegedly tackled when he did not immediately lie on the ground as ordered.

He was reportedly struck at least 10 times. A dash camera filmed the arrest.

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Officers determined he was the owner of the car at the scene but detained him for disobeying police and resisting arrest.

Their use of force was justified, an Evanston Police spokesman said, as they thought it was a case of car theft.

Dr Crosby was later acquitted of all charges and brought a lawsuit for damages against the city council and the police officers.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Police allegedly tackled and beat Lawrence Crosby during the arrest

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