The city of Miami Gardens is facing a federal civil rights lawsuit filed by 10 citizens who claim that its police officers, for years, have practiced a pattern of unconstitutional stop-and-frisks, searches, seizure and arrests in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
The 144-page lawsuit, filed late last week, was brought by Alex Saleh, owner of the 207 Quickstop, a convenience store at 3185 NW 207th St., and a group of his employees and customers. The action charges that police consistently used racial profiling in arresting the store’s largely African American employees and customers.
The suit came a week after The Miami Herald published a story, along with video clips, that showed how the city’s police officers have stopped and arrested people for minor infractions, then aggressively searched them.
One of the plaintiffs, Earl Sampson, an employee of the store, was stopped and questioned more than 250 times in the past four years. Almost all of his offenses were for trespassing, including several instances when Sampson was arrested for trespassing while working his shift at the store.