LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan State Police department is being sued for $1 million in connection with an arrest where a K-9 attacked a suspect for more than three minutes.
“I called this press conference today to announce the filing of a Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit against Trooper Surbrook of the Michigan State Police and the Michigan State Police Department,” Attorney Maurice Davis, with Davis Law Group, said.
The lawsuit was announced Thursday by Davis, who stood alongside his client Robert Gilliam, who is now walking with a cane.
All of this stems from a traffic stop from November 13, 2020 in Lansing. Gilliam said he was there to see family when he was pulled over. He admits he didn’t stop immediately because he was scared. Gilliam ended up crashing the car, where he sustained a broken hip, but he said when he got out of the car, Trooper Surbrook ordered his dog to attack him.
“I’m asking the officer to ‘Please, keep the dog off me, get him off of me,’” Gilliam said. “He’s telling the dog to stay on him, ‘Good boy. Good boy.’”
Gilliam said the dog kept biting him repeatedly for almost four minutes.
“When I told him that he’s biting me in my head, he said ‘I don’t care,’” Gilliam said.
Now, Gilliam said the scars are a constant reminder of that dreadful night.
“I have body scars,” Gilliam said. “I have wounds that I will live for the rest of my life with.”
Michigan State Police said Surbrook had been charged with felonious assault in connection with the incident and has been placed on unpaid suspension pending adjudication of the case. He has been removed from the K-9 Unit and his dog has been reassigned to another handler.
MSP released a statement that reads in part: