A Somali American woman has dropped a lawsuit accusing Portland police officers of using excessive force against her six years ago.
Jessica Grondin, a spokesperson for the city of Portland, said Thursday that both sides agreed to dismiss the lawsuit without providing an explanation. There was no settlement.
Mumia Ali, who has lived in the United States for 15 years, alleged that she was illegally arrested, tied to a hospital bed and medicated without consent in July 2014 at Maine Medical Center, where she was looking for her daughter, according to the Portland Press Herald.
During the arrest, Ali said she fell and chipped a tooth and that a police officer choked her until she lost consciousness, the newspaper reported.
Her lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Portland, named the city of Portland, Officers Jeffrey Druan and Suna Shaw, and former Police Chief Michael Sauschuck, who now serves as Maine’s public safety commissioner.
It said that her case fit within a pattern of police harassment directed at Somali and Black communities in the city. Black people are more likely to be addressed or subject to use of force in Portland, according to the Press Herald, citing data the Portland Police Department released earlier this year.
That lawsuit was dismissed on Tuesday, Grondin said.
Police Chief Frank Clark said Thursday that the department’s internal affairs division cleared the officers of any wrongdoing back in 2014 and that further review this year of video and audio evidence upheld the original finding.
“The evidence simply did not support the allegation that the officer choked or otherwise used excessive force against anyone. This is a just outcome to this matter, and I’m glad to have it concluded,” Clark said.
A lawyer for Ali declined to provide details about the case’s dismissal to the Press Herald, saying only “It was in my client’s best interest.”