Oregon rider wins $180,170 case against kicking cop

Knocked off bike, kicked to the ground and held at gunpoint. For speeding.

NEXT time PC Plod hands you a ticket for a minor transgression be thankful that you’re not being dealt with like Oregon rider Justin Wilkens.

He’s been awarded $180,170 in damages after Robert Edwards, a police officer in Venta, Oregon, chased him down in an unmarked police car with no siren, drove into him when he stopped and then kicked him to the ground and cuffed him at gunpoint. 

The events in question actually took place in 2012 (a year when cops karate-kicking motorcyclists seems to have been popular) but it’s taken until now for the case to be settled.

Yes, Wilkens was speeding and making illegal overtakes, but video evidence from the unmarked car – which had hidden flashing lights but no siren – doesn’t appear to show he was trying to escape. His argument was that he simply didn’t realise he was being followed by police, and the jury clearly agreed.

In court, Edwards – then a lieutenant, now a captain – said he didn’t realise the camera was working in the car, while lawyers for the police argued unconvincingly that Wilkens had stopped unexpectedly and that Edwards hit him because his car suffered brake fade.

At some stage while being knocked off his bike and kicked to the ground, Wilkens suffered two fractured ribs and a broken collarbone. He was awarded $31,171 to cover medical bills and damage to his bike, $100,000 for pain and suffering and $50,000 in punitive damages.

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