Civilian Investigative Panel reviewing rough arrest of paraplegic man by City of Miami officers

MIAMI – Several City of Miami police officers and their role in a rough arrest involving a paralyzed man are being reviewed.

The department cleared the officers, but the Civilian Investigative Panel is taking a closer look.

The body camera video shows the arrest of Trayon Fussell in the summer of 2019.

Fussell was in the passenger seat after police pulled over the car in which he was riding with two friends. The situation escalated when officers learned Fussell had a bench warrant for marijuana and theft charges.

“I told him I didn’t have my wheelchair, I’d been shot eight times,” Fussell said. “I’m a paraplegic”

He told the officers he’s paralyzed from a bullet that hit his spine when he was 15 years old. Officers told his friends to carry him to the patrol car, where they tried to put handcuffs on him.

At one point the officer appears to put his hands on Fussell who said he was asking to be handcuffed in the front because of his injury.

A Miami Police Internal Affairs investigation cleared the officers of any wrongdoing, but an inquiry by the city’s Civilian Investigation Panel concluded allegations of excessive force against one officer were sustained, and several others used improper procedure.

The investigation found some officers repeatedly muted their body cameras, while others failed to turn them on. Fussell says the experience was humiliating.

“You just don’t treat me like that. You don’t handle me like that. Because I’m a human too, I’m a person too,” he said.

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