Chesapeake dishes out $50,000 in lawsuit filed by 70-year-old woman

Posted at 7:59 PM, Jan 27, 2015
and last updated 2015-01-27 19:59:23-05

Chesapeake, Va. - The City of Chesapeake is dishing out $50,000 dollars to settle a lawsuit brought against police by 70-year-old Ruth Davenport.

"I'm as happy as a lark," Davenport said Tuesday.

She says she's happy today, but that comes after nine long months of fighting for justice. The lawsuit filed by Davenport back in November claims two police officers Joel Ayala-Acevedo and Anthony Echevarria were at her house to serve a search warrant for her son when one officer grabbed her by the arm, pushed her into a wall and threw her to the ground.

"I was screaming at the top of my lungs, 'You're hurting me, you're hurting me,'" Davenport told NewsChannel 3 back in April.

In court documents, the officer claims Davenport was cursing and kicked him while resisting, but her charges were dropped. Davenport believes her saving grace was a video of what happened recorded on a body camera of one of the officers.

"I said the same story and I'm sticking to it. The same story over and over and I think the camera corroborated that," she added.

The city has refused to release the video, but Davenport's attorney, S.W. Dawson saw it himself.

"I think I can safely say that the video would have corroborated Ruth's version of events in whole or in part," Dawson said.

Dawson is confident he and Davenport would have won the $500,000 dollar lawsuit if it went to trial, but both Davenport and the city agreed to settle for $50,000. However, Chesapeake's City Attorney, Jan Proctor released this statement about the settlement Tuesday:

"The settlement is not an admission or a concession that Ms. Davenport's rights were violated," Proctor wrote.

For Davenport, whether or not the city admits responsibility is a moot point.

"You know what? It doesn't matter to me," Davenport said. "It doesn't even matter that they don't admit it. I just know what they did and their outcome of how they handled the case and they made a pretty rapid decision once we got the ball rolling. I'm very happy. All is well."

Back in November, Chesapeake police did tell us Officer Joel Ayala-Acevedo was no longer with force, but they wouldn't tell us if he resigned or if he was fired.


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