Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Local Activist Files Lawsuit Against City of Pittsburgh

Adrienne Young, Director of Tree of Hope, a local non-profit that helps family members grieving the death of a loved one due to violence has filed a lawsuit against the city of Pittsburgh, Police Chief Nate Harper, members of the police department and employees of the court of common pleas of Allegheny County pretrial detention services.

Young says she was unfairly targeted by the police department after a minor car accident after previous interactions with them because of her work as a community activist and because she is an African-American woman. She said she was wrongfully patted down, arrested, and then filed a complaint with The Office of Municipal Investigations. All of the charges were dismissed but one of the officers refiled the case and she was arrested again.

Her attorney Edward Olds said her constitutional rights were violated.

She was altogether arrested three times and on one occasion spent 27 days in jail. "They put me on the worst pod, the high risk pod with murderers and all of the worst people. And they kept me locked up most of the day and they let you out to eat and then they let you out two hours in the evening and then they put you back in again. I was only allowed to shower twice a week. It was like a nightmare," she said at a press conference on Tuesday.

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