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Karen Garner arrest video footage. Picture: Loveland Police Department

Woman with dementia wins $3 million settlement for wrongful arrest, injuries

A city in the US will pay a $3 million settlement to a woman with dementia who was assaulted by police officers last year. 

In June 2020, 73-year-old Karen Garner was violently arrested by police in Colorado after forgetting to pay for $14 US worth of items from a Walmart store.

Police bodycam footage of the incident shows police approaching her as she walks along the side of the road, and after a short interaction the slightly built and visibly confused woman had her arms bent behind her back and was shoved to the ground.

Police then slammed her against their vehicle, all of which caused serious injuries to Garner, including a broken bone in her arm and a dislocated shoulder.

A video showed officers laughing at Garner, and the footage, after the arrest. “I love it,” one officer said. “This is great.”

Three police officers later resigned.

Two of the officers who resigned now face criminal charges: Austin Hopp for assault and his colleague, Daria Jalali, was charged with not intervening in a case of excessive force or reporting it.

According to the New York Times, officials in the city of Loveland, Colorado, agreed to the settlement and apologised to Garner and her family.

“The settlement with Karen Garner will help bring some closure to an unfortunate event in our community but does not upend the work we have left to do,” said City Manager Stev Adams.

Garner's lawyer Sarah Schielke called on the Loveland police chief, Bob Ticer, to resign. She said that if Chief Ticer resigned within the next month, she would donate $50,000 to an Alzheimer’s or dementia charity of his choice.

Garner's family said the settlement would go towards round the clock care for their mother.

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