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Denver City Council approves $1.2 million settlement in excessive force lawsuit

Malow Mayek sued the city last year, saying Denver officers violated his civil rights when they used a baton and Taser on him in 2018.

DENVER — Denver City Council on Monday approved a $1.2 million settlement for an excessive force lawsuit involving three Denver police officers. 

Malow Mayek sued the city last year, saying officers violated his civil rights when they used a baton and Taser on him in 2018.

The incident happened on Aug. 22, 2018, when officers were dispatched to the 1700-block of Pecos Street after receiving a report that there was a person in the area yelling obscenities, according to an arrest affidavit.

This prompted a search for the suspect, identified as Mayek. According to the affidavit, one of the officers, Sgt. Joseph Rodarte, learned through talking with witnesses that Mayek was having a manic episode.

Rodarte later saw Mayek on South Jason Street and got out of his car. When Mayek approached Rodarte and another officer, the affidavit said, he pushed the other officer from behind and ran into a nearby open lot.

The affidavit said officers chased Mayek into a business, and he turned around and ran toward the officers.

One of the officers, according to the affidavit, tripped Mayek to keep him from getting away.

The affidavit said Rodarte then approached Mayek and hit him in the head, back and legs with a baton. Body camera video also showed two other officers using a taser while he was on the ground. 

Rodarte was charged with assault in connection with the incident. A jury acquitted him in 2019, and he resigned in 2020. The other two officers were suspended without pay for 10 days. 

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