An Ohio man was awarded $22 million after being beaten and locked in a storage closet by two East Cleveland police officers for four days.

Arnold Black was arrested in 2012 for allegedly transporting cocaine in his pick-up truck while traveling through East Cleveland. One of the two arresting officers severely beat Black and took him to a local police precinct.

Once they arrived at the location, instead of putting Black in a jail cell, he was locked in a storage closet to hide his injuries. Black spent the next four days in that storage closet with no toilet and was only given a carton of milk to drink.

The police had no evidence to support their case alleging Mr. Black was trafficking illegal narcotics, but the Ohio man was still indicted for possession of cocaine. The case against him was dropped a month later.

Black filed a civil lawsuit against the City of East Cleveland for his four-day detainment, which includes the following allegations: 

  • Malicious Prosecution
  • Abuse of Process
  • Battery
  • False Imprisonment
  • Supervisory Liability
  • Reckless, Wanton, or Willful conduct
  • Civil Conspiracy

Black’s attorney, Robert DiCello, told reporters this kind of abuse is nothing new in East Cleveland and on Tuesday, a jury delivered a $22 million verdict in favor of his client.

In response to this disturbing story and subsequent multi-million dollar settlement, NewsOne Now panelist Cleo Manago, a behavioral health expert and CEO of the Black Men’s Xchange said, “We have to start getting our people to understand their importance, their relevance, to unlearn the myths that come out of the culture and the media that teaches that something is low in value about them.

“This guy got $22 million because he was able to win a case for normalized treatment of Black men in this country — that’s not unusual.”

He continued, “We have to stop whining about racism and step up and act like we have some value, because for example, Jews say ‘Never again,’ they have a mantra like, ‘You not going to mess with us again.’”

“We have to develop a mantra as well that says never again — not Black lives matter, but don’t mess with us.”

Watch guest host Avis Jones-DeWeever, Cleo Manago, and the NewsOne Now panel discuss the Arnold Black case in the video clip above.

Watch “NewsOne Now” with Roland Martin, in its new time slot on TV One.

Subscribe to the “NewsOne Now” Audio Podcast on iTunes.

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22 Black Women Who Died In Police Custody

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