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Man Awarded $2M in Police Beating

December 6, 2000

BALTIMORE (AP) _ A man who said a beating by city police left him paralyzed from the waist down has been awarded $2 million by a jury.

Horace Muhammad, 52, won the judgment against officer Joseph Tracy after a three-week trial in Baltimore Circuit Court.

``His life has been devastated,″ his attorney Samuel M. Shapiro said. ``I think the $2 million award will allow him to live with a little bit of dignity and allow him to be a little self-sufficient.″

Muhammad said the beating occurred after police came to his fiancee’s house in response to a domestic-violence call in 1997. He followed police instruction to leave and went to a nearby friend’s house, but was thrown down onto that home’s porch and beaten by officers, Shapiro said.

The jury on Monday found Tracy liable for malicious prosecution and the violation of Muhammad’s rights, Shapiro said. Three other accused officers and two ambulance personnel were cleared of wrongdoing.

Neither Tracy nor his lawyer could be reached for comment. City police also declined to comment.

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