San Anselmo man files lawsuit against Marin police

SAN ANSELMO, Calif. (KRON) — A San Anselmo man filed a lawsuit against the Central Marin Police Authority after he claimed they stunned him with a taser and arrested him while suffering a seizure at his home.

Police body camera footage captured the call to Bruce Frankel’s San Anselmo home on the early morning of Aug. 29, 2022. Frankel’s fiancée at the time — now wife — called 911, but when officers arrived the situation escalated.

Frankel later learned he was suffering from a grand mal seizure.

On Wednesday, Frankel filed a lawsuit against the Central Marin Police Authority.

“He’s still struggling with the physical issues and still struggling with the emotional issues from this,” said Frankel’s lawyer, David Fiol. “He had two shoulder surgeries, so he’s recovering from those, which occurred over the last year or so.”

The lawsuit alleges excessive force, false arrest, and officers conspiring to fabricate charges.

One of the responding officers can be heard giving a statement on police body camera.

“It’s all kind of happened fast but I feel like he checked me, so I tried to control like his arm, and it was just like resist he fell under the bed I was just trying to like get him on his stomach to detain him — but he tried to start the first initial physical aggressive contact,” the officer said.

A statement from the Central Marin Police Authority reads:

“As much as we would like to, the authority by law is precluded from commenting upon medical and personnel matters that are deemed confidential and private. However, the authority will vigorously defend itself against this meritless and factually inaccurate litigation which has not even been served upon the authority as of yet.”

A separate statement to KRON 4 from the lawyer representing the officers reads:

“The officers who arrived on-scene to help in response to the medical call did an extraordinary job under very difficult circumstances. Mr. Frankel presented symptoms that mimicked someone under the influence. He was irrational, unstable, and violent. While we now know this was the consequence of a seizure, at the time the officers had no such information and acted in accordance with training, law, and policy. “

The lawsuit seeks economic damages for medical expenses and punishment sufficient to ensure that this situation does not happen again.

“This department has seen a similar set of facts before an epileptic suffering a seizure years before this occurred,” Fiol said. “The officers mistook it for something else and beat and then arrested a person who was suffering an epileptic seizure.”

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