WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 13, 2014) — Members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) on Friday released the following statements to condemn the use of excessive police force against Sureshbhai Patel, an Indian grandfather who was left partially paralyzed after an encounter will Alabama police.
Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:
“I was appalled to learn about the brutal attack on Sureshbhai Patel by a police officer in Madison, Alabama. It is a positive development that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has stepped in to investigate this case. In no way should the color of someone’s skin or their limited English proficiency lead to the type of confusion and unreasonable use of force that left Mr. Patel partially paralyzed. As we await the FBI’s findings, I will continue to work with my colleagues in Congress to ensure that this type of profiling and excessive force is no longer permitted by law enforcement.”
Congressman Michael Honda (CA-17), CAPAC Chair Emeritus:
“I am pleased that the officer involved in the assault of an Indian grandfather visiting his family in Alabama has been charged with assault. My thoughts go out to the family and friends of Sureshbhai Patel, who is still recovering from injuries that have left him partially paralyzed. In the aftermath of so many events that have worn down the trust between communities of color and police officers, the Madison Police Department has taken the right step. I look forward to the findings of an FBI civil rights investigation into this incident.”
Congressman Ted Lieu (CA-33):
“A full investigation into this matter is what Mr. Patel, his family and the Madison, Alabama community deserve. Once all the facts are known about this unfortunate incident, it is vital that they serve as a roadmap to improve the way law enforcement interacts with individuals who possess limited English proficiency. I hope for Mr. Patel’s quick return to full health.”
Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL-09):
“I join the call to investigate the violence against Sureshbhai Patel. We must ensure that people of all backgrounds, including visitors and immigrants, are treated fairly under the law.”
The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994.