NBC10 Philadelphia - Harry Hairston
Nicole Burney says her call to 911 landed her in the hospital after police arrived. Now she is suing the police department because she says the cop was out of control. Burney sat down with NBC10's Harry Hairston to tell her story.
A Delaware County woman is filing a lawsuit against a local police department after claiming she was the victim of police brutality.
Nicole Burney of Sharon Hill and her mother, Lynda Thomas, claim the ordeal began during a domestic dispute. Thomas tells NBC10 Nicole called Darby Township Police while she was arguing with her sister. When officers arrived, Nicole claims they handcuffed her and roughed her up in front of her 5-year-old son.
“One handcuff was placed on me and then I was shoved and pulled,” said Burney. “I hit the ground and they put on the other one while dragging me. He knocked me into my truck without any reason, without any cause and without saying anything.”
“I kept asking the cop why he was handcuffing her,” said Thomas. “He never did answer me. They dropped her and her head hit the cement and she started having a seizure.”
Other people wrote letters backing up Burney’s allegations. Police called EMS to take Burney to the hospital. Medical reports from the scene as well as the hospital state Burney suffered a closed head injury.
A Darby Township Police report also states an officer attempted to restrain Nicole “when Nicole apparently had a seizure.”
“You have two females arguing,” said Burney’s attorney Gerard Schromm. “That doesn’t require anyone to get involved with handcuffs.”
Schromm filed a lawsuit against the department as well as Officer Richard Censullo. The suit alleges police used excessive force and violated Burney’s constitutional rights.
Darby Township Police Chief Leonard McDevitt and the Township’s attorney told NBC 10 pending litigation prevents them from commenting. Chief McDevitt did tell NBC10 by phone however that he believes “his officer did nothing wrong” and that he’s “not worried about the lawsuit.”
“I never could imagine in a million years that I would be a victim of police brutality,” said Burney.
Burney was never arrested or charged with a crime.