VENTURA : Police, City Sued in Alleged Beating

A Ventura man sued the city and its police force Friday, alleging that police officers beat him and ordered a police dog to attack him as he lay prone during an arrest.

The suit filed in Ventura County Superior Court by William David Speer alleges that unidentified Ventura police officers arrested him as he stood in the yard of a San Pablo Street home on Aug. 5, 1990.

Speer and police officials could not be reached for comment late Friday.

Speer made no attempt to flee and obeyed the officers' commands, but they held a gun to his head and shoved him face-down to the ground, the suit alleges.

The officers then hit Speer with a flashlight on his back, shoulders and legs, and sicked a police dog on him, the suit claims.

Speer's suit alleges that the dog bit, tore and clawed at his left leg, shoulder and arm, causing permanent numbness and scars.

The suit asks for more than $6 million in damages.

Police records show only that Speer was contacted by police that evening on suspicion of vandalism, but that he was not arrested.

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