Man blinded by bean bag during Cleveland protest sues deputy

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(See a past report on the Cleveland protest in the video, above)

CLEVELAND (AP/WJW) — A man hit in the face with a bean bag and blinded in one eye during a protest last year in downtown Cleveland has sued the sheriff’s deputy who shot him.


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This Wednesday, June 24, 2020 photo shows John Sanders in Sandusky, Ohio. Sanders, who was hit in the face with a bean bag and blinded in one eye during a protest last year in downtown Cleveland, has sued the sheriff’s deputy who shot him. The complaint filed Saturday, May 29, 2021, by Sanders says the Cuyahoga County sheriff’s deputy shot him from behind a broken window as he walked away from the county Justice Center after taking photos. (Dennis Murray Jr. via AP)

The complaint filed Saturday by John Sanders, of Sandusky, says the Cuyahoga County sheriff’s deputy shot him from behind a broken window as he walked away from the county Justice Center after taking photos. The suit describes him as an amateur photographer.

The lawsuit says pellets from the bean bag “destroyed” Sander’s left eye, leaving him permanently blind.

The complaint says Sanders was shot by Deputy Bruce Lourie, who never received required training on the use of non-lethal munitions. The lawsuit calls Lourie, “A troubled law enforcement officer with a troubled career.”


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According to the suit, the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department does not have a policy specific to the use of beanbag shotguns. It claims beanbag rounds should never be used on a person’s head or face and should not be fired from an elevated position.

The protest was one of several nationwide that followed the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.

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