"Lumberjack, that's what it reminds me of, somebody cutting down a tree in their yard," he said when asked about the takedown of Patel, 57, in response to a neighbour's call about a "skinny black man" walking near homes.
The takedown left Patel in need of spinal surgery and with limited ability to walk or grip with his hands. The defence has argued Patel pulled away as Parker searched him and that he could have had a deadly weapon in his pants' pockets. "If he was trying to pull away, it still would not have equated to the type of force ... the technique is too violent," testified Sanders. He said Patel's age, his size, his inability to speak English and the presence of multiple officers should have factored into the decision on how to handle Patel.
Sanders also testified he did not see a sign of a threat on the video, saying Patel's legs seemed relaxed. As for Patel walking away from officer, Sanders said: "That's not really resistance." Earlier, Captain John Stringer, an 18-year veteran of the Madison police force, said the force used by Parker had to be proportional with the actions of Patel. "My conclusion was it was improper."
After the prosecution rested, Defence attorney Robert Tuten asked the judge to throw out the case saying, "They did not prove he was wilfully, intentionally violating the civil rights of Mr. Patel by using excessive force."
Assistant US Attorney Robert Posey replied that police must be "objectively reasonable" in taking steps that would be criminal assault if done by somebody else. "He's lucky he didn't kill him. This is essentially, the government would argue, deadly force."