Providence Police Officers on Trial

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – The trial of four Providence police officers accused in a federal lawsuit of assaulting and falsely arresting a Massachusetts man has started.

Lawyers for Christopher Santos of Southbridge, Mass. said in court on Tuesday that in June 2008 police pushed him through the glass window of a downtown Providence building, stomped on his
head, then struck him when he was taken to the police station.

They also say police directed a racial epithet at Santos.

The Providence Journal reports that defense lawyers called Santos' account “an outright and flagrant lie.”

They say Santos punched the window himself because he was angry at being denied access to two nightclubs, and filed the federal civil rights lawsuit to make money.

Santos and his friends had taken a limousine to Providence to celebrate a birthday.

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