$1.6M for man who repeatedly anal-probed by NM cops who thought he had drugs

Remember David Eckert, the New Mexico man who got multiple anal probes after a cop decided he must be hiding drugs because a dog "alerted" on him? Well, he's gotten $1.3 million out of the city and county. He's still suing the hospital for its role in his nonconsensual, warrantless enemas, colonoscopy, X-ray, and forced public defecation. If they won't settle, he's prepared to go to a jury trial. You get the impression that Eckert is out to make a point here: if your town cops and/or doctors participate in illegal, sadistic war-on-drugs torture, the victims will take all your money and destroy you, so cut it the fuck out. Techdirt's Tim Cushing has more:

If the other entities involved "refuse to take responsibility," Eckert's lawyer will push for a jury trial. This ends the financial bleeding for the city and county, the latter of which has already spent $55,000 in taxpayer funds fighting the lawsuit. There's always the slim hope that large settlements will encourage the overseers of police departments (city and county governments) to realize that preventative measures are likely the cheaper option. Officers, like the two involved in this case, should be ousted before they cost taxpayers millions of dollars in settlements. (It's unlikely this was either officer's first abusive act.) Failing that, the penalties for the officers involved should be severe enough that it discourages other officers from engaging in abusive acts -- for instance, holding the individuals involved financially responsible for the reimbursing the cost of the settlements.

As it stands now, Eckert has received $1.6 million and the implicit admission that he was wronged by the city and county via the officers' actions. Now, he needs the same from the hospital that was so willing to aid these officers in tormenting him in search of drugs he didn't possess.

Man Subjected To Multiple Rectal Searches And Enemas By Police Officers Receives $1.6 Million Settlement [Tim Cushing/Techdirt]

Notable Replies

  1. hojo says:

    The whole appeal to authority is no excuse. These MDs are criminal rapists, as Dr_Awkward said above. I would classify them as worse than the cops in that regard, as the physicians actually did the invasive procedures against the guy's will; the cops were only giving instructions. What was the possible downside for the MDs if they refused??!? Would the cops haul them in on trumped up charges--the old "failure to comply with an officer of the law" crap?

    I never understood how Russia went communist, how Japan went insane with nationalism, what happened in Rwanda, or any of the other madness of crowds things, but seeing horrors like this take place in my country makes me realize that there are plenty of quietly psychopathic monsters lurking in all kinds of positions at all times. All it takes is a nudge and they pop out, ready to turn in neighbors, trample the helpless, and aid and abet a criminal authority.

  2. Shuck says:

    It's not nearly enough money yet. Although Deming appears to be quite small and the settlement is likely significant to them (since they're paying most of it), I don't see the amount as big enough that larger cities are going to take notice (this is "it's cheaper to settle than to fight it" levels of cash for them), much less preventatively rein in police as a result, and smaller towns don't usually have a level of police oversight where they might do something about it either. I mean, hell, the city isn't even admitting any wrongdoing.

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