EUGENE, Oregon — A state trooper who was kicked out of Autzen Stadium during Oregon's football game against Washington State University last October is suing the officer who ejected him and the city of Eugene for $400,000.
The Register-Guard reports (http://bit.ly/1pMmCAI ) that the lawsuit was filed Friday in federal court in Eugene.
Trooper Marc Boyd, 49, said it was a case of mistaken identity and that he was roughed up and wrongly detained after a fight that didn't involve him. He was banned from the stadium for 18 months.
Police department spokesman John Hankemeier said Monday that he could not comment on the pending litigation.
The lawsuit states that Boyd was in a section where two other men had been fighting, and he calmly questioned another unruly spectator about whether he had tickets to sit in that area.
Eugene police officer Jed McGuire, "for some unknown reason," approached Boyd after becoming aware of the disturbance, then jabbed the trooper in the torso with a flashlight and cursed at him while ordering him out of the section, the lawsuit states.
McGuire and Boyd exchanged words before McGuire and other officers took him into custody, according to the lawsuit. Boyd denies resisting officers' efforts to handcuff him, and says in the suit that he suffered embarrassment when police escorted him away.
Police typically eject dozens of rowdy spectators during football games, and most involve intoxicated people.
In Boyd's case, McGuire wrote in a report documenting the incident that the off-duty trooper smelled of alcohol and admitted to having had a few beers before being handcuffed. The report states that three other spectators said Boyd had provoked an altercation in the stands.
Lane County prosecutors reviewed the case and decided against filing criminal charges against Boyd.
Boyd filed a misconduct complaint against McGuire after the incident. Eugene Police Chief Pete Kerns ruled that McGuire violated the police department's courtesy policy when he swore at Boyd, but said the officer did not use excessive force or break policy by refusing to identify himself to Boyd, as the trooper had alleged.
Boyd worked as a fish and wildlife officer in the Springfield office. Lt. Gregg Hastings says he has been re-assigned to the patrol division and is currently on approved leave.
Information from: The Register-Guard, http://www.registerguard.com