Man shot by Foley police officer files lawsuit over alleged ‘excessive force’

Baldwin County

FOLEY, Ala. (WKRG) — A man shot by police during a December arrest in Baldwin County is now suing the officer who shot him.

In the federal lawsuit, James Walker Stewart alleges Foley PD Officer Bryant Nelson used excessive force during the confrontation.

The shooting happened on Sunday, December 1, 2019, after a traffic stop on Brinks Willis Road. Investigators said Stewart, a passenger in the car, ran away from the traffic stop.

LEFT: James Walker Stewart is seen in his jail booking photo from December 20, 2019.
RIGHT: Foley PD Officer Bryant Nelson receives his K-9 certification in 2018. (Courtesy: Foley PD/Facebook)

According to the county’s Major Crimes Unit, Officer Nelson chased after Stewart and tased him at least twice as he resisted arrest. A K-9 was also used in an attempt to get Stewart into custody.

Stewart momentarily got away, but Officer Nelson found him trying to hide in an overgrown lot, investigators said.

During a second attempt to arrest Stewart, investigators said Stewart grabbed the officer’s gun. The officer fired twice, injuring the suspect.

Stewart’s attorney claims his client was left paralyzed by his injuries. After receiving treatment, Stewart was booked into jail on December 20 and charged with assault, attempt to elude, resisting arrest, and possession of a controlled substance.

Despite the report indicating Stewart grabbed the officer’s gun, the lawsuit alleges Stewart “was posing no threat” to the officer. The lawsuit calls the officer’s actions “reckless” and demands the officer be charged with assault, battery and excessive force.

At the time of the incident, Stewart had an active felony warrant for his arrest and was also in possession of methamphetamine and a knife, investigators said.

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