Black man sues Texas police after being led through city by rope like a slave

A black man has sued police in Texas after officers led him through the streets by a rope after his arrest.

Donald Neely, 44, said the officers’ conduct was “extreme and outrageous” and caused him to suffer humiliation and fear.

Photos were published in August last year of him being led through Galveston by officers on horseback, with a rope linked to handcuffs, similar to historical pictures of slaves in chains.

He had been homeless and sleeping on a footpath when he was arrested for criminal trespass.

At the time, one officer could be heard on body-camera video saying twice that leading Mr Neely down the city’s streets in such a way would look “bad”.

Mr Neely has now sued the city’s police department for one million dollars (£770,000), accusing officers of negligence and saying they should have known he would consider it offensive to be led on the rope “as though he was a slave”.

The lawsuit said: “Neely felt as though he was put on display, as slaves once were.”

Last year, Galveston’s police chief apologised for what had happened.

Vernon Hale said in a statement that the technique was acceptable in some situations, such as crowd control, but the officers had “showed poor judgement in this instance and could have waited for a transport unit at the location of arrest”.

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