Indian Grandfather Assault Case: South Asian Body Disappointed Over Mistrial Decision

WASHINGTON: The declaration of a mistrial for an American police officer who partially paralysed a 58-year-old Indian grandfather in February in the US state of Alabama has disappointed a South Asian rights group.

Madison police officer Eric Parker was captured on video beating Sureshbhai Patel when he was walking down the sidewalk in February in Alabama. Patel was left partially paralysed.

Parker, 26, was charged with violating the civil rights of Patel and using excessive force. He was also charged in state court with a misdemeanor assault.

That trial and his termination proceedings are on hold pending the outcome of this federal case.

“SAALT is deeply disappointed by the mistrial declared in the trial of former Officer Eric Parker, who is accused of the brutal beating of Sureshbhai Patel in Madison, Alabama,” Suman Raghunathan, Executive Director of South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT), told NBC News.

Later in a statement, SAALT said, “We are encouraged that the US Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Alabama will pursue a re-trial in this case within the 70 day window.”

If convicted, Parker would face up to 10 years in prison.

National Coalition of South Asian Organisations member and Huntsville, Alabama community-based organisation, AshaKiran, continue to work with the local community and the US Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Alabama to ensure justice is brought to this case, a media release said.