Police ordered to pay $100,000 for arresting father who pointed dinosaur toy at themBy Mason White 2:34 PM November 5, 2015
|Rickey Caton with the dinosaur|
By: Chan Yuan
A man in Australia, won a lawsuit against police after he was arrested for pointing a dinosaur at them.
Rickey Caton was arrested with force by two officers in New South Wales, after playfully producing a dinosaur toy during a roadside stop.
Now, a judge has ordered the police to pay more than $100,000 in legal costs after finding the matter should never have gone to court.
Caton and his friend Adam Antram, who was with him in the car at the time of the incident, are planning to file another lawsuit for hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages for assault and false imprisonment.
“The case should not have been brought to court,” Magistrate Mark Douglass at the Kiama Local Court said.
“The prosecutor did not reasonably investigate the case in a relevant manner,” the judge said, referring to the evidence of this third officer who was at the scene at the time of the arrest.
Officer Lucie Litchfield testified that Caton and Antram were not violent, but they were victims of aggression by police.
Litchfield was forced to resign from the police department after suffering backlash for coming out in support of the suspects.
Lichfield said that when the police pulled over Mr. Caton and asked if he had any weapons, the father pulled out the toy and
said: “I have a dinosaur – roaaaar!”
She said that Senior Constable Todd Finnegan, forcefully pulled Caton out from the car, pushed him to the ground and handcuffed him.
The other police officer, Senior Constable Patrick Hicks, then tackled Antram and he hit a wall.
Prosecutors in the case were aware that officer Litchfield had contradicted her colleague’s statements of events, but they did not question her before going to trial.