Injured suspect plans to sue city of South Bend

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Thomas Stevens has filed a notice with the city of South Bend that he plans to sue for damages. Stevens was injured during his arrest in March 2014.

In March, Stevens was driving down a residential street with his lights off when Officer Aaron Knepper attempted to pull him over.

Stevens drove a short distance away and ran towards his home.

While attempting to arrest Stevens, Knepper and Stevens got into a physical altercation.

The St. Joseph County Prosecutor's Office reviewed the case and decided Steven's injuries were not caused by excessive force by a police officer.

Stevens was hospitalized and was put in a medically induced coma.

Stevens' attorney says he didn't have insurance at the time of the incident.

Stevens is asking the city for $350,000 in damages and his mother, who also was arrested the same night, is asking for $50,000 in damages.

Captain Phil Trent said Officer Knepper is still assigned to the midnight shift, patrol division.

The police department's internal affairs and risk management are looking into officer Knepper's actions now that the criminal investigation is over.

Thomas Stevens faces 5 charges:

  • Possession of marijuana (felony)

  • Possession of a legend drug (felony)

  • Resisting law enforcement (felony)

  • Resisting law enforcement (misdemeanor)

  • Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated under the influence of a controlled substance (misdemeanor)

His trial date has not been set.

His mom was also charged with resisting law enforcement (misdemeanor).


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