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Woman Claims Monrovia Officer Assaulted Her

A courier filed a federal police brutality lawsuit against the city alleging that an unidentified Monrovia Police officer beat her and falsely imprisoned her following a traffic stop.

A medical supplies courier filed a federal lawsuit against the city last week alleging that a Monrovia Police officer assaulted her during a traffic stop and arrested her without cause, documents show.

Hsinlei Shao said in the lawsuit that she was pulled over on August 29, 2009 while attempting to make a time-sensitive delivery of a "blood product," according to the federal complaint.

After asking the officer to let her deliver the supplies to her destination across the street, an unknown officer "savagely grabbed (her) from behind, smashing her face-first onto the pavement."

"(Shao), who was wearing glasses at the time, was injured," the civil complaint reads.

Monrovia Police Chief Jim Hunt did not immediately return a call requesting comment on this story.

City Manager Scott Ochoa declined to comment on the allegations but said the city could find no record of Shao ever filing a complaint with the city before pursuing legal action, which he said was unusual.

"Generally speaking, the way it works is you file a claim and it's either accepted or rejected and if it's rejected then you can file a lawsuit," Ochoa.

Ochoa said the city has not yet been formally served with the lawsuit.

"We will look into it once we get the lawsuit and investigate it accordingly," he said.

After the alleged assault, Shao claims she was then "shoved into the back of a police car" and taken to the police station, where a female officer prepared a report noting that she was bleeding from the face. Shao alleges that another unknown officer saw the report and ordered that it be destroyed.

"That unknown officer looked at the report the female officer prepared and ordered her to destroy it and write another," the complaint reads.

At that point, Shao was told that she was being arrested for attacking a peace officer, according to her lawsuit.

"The unknown officers claimed that (her) alleged attack caused an unknown officer to have to be in the hospital for several days," the lawsuit states.

Shao claims she was held for "approximately two days" in jail during the incident and that she was fired from her job when she was finally released. She was later informed that no charges were being filed against her, according to the lawsuit.

After losing her job, Shao's home was foreclosed upon, the complaint says.

"As of this date, (she) is homeless and lives in her car."

The lawsuit names the city and unknown police officers as defendants and asserts that the city had knowledge of "repeated allegations of abuse and assaultive misconduct toward citizens." Shao also alleges that the city failed to properly investigate her allegations, destroyed evidence and covered up the incident.

 

Check back later for more on this story.

Jerry Baker August 11, 2011 at 07:07 PM
I'm not surprised. Back in the 1990's I was in a car that stopped by a Monrovia Police officer who was at the time famous for having complaints and lawsuits filed against her. The reason for the stop? The officer allegedly heard someone in the car shout something at her as she was driving the opposite direction on Foothill Blvd. After about 20 minutes of verbally harassing the occupants of the vehicle, the officer went on her way without issuing any citation or warning for any infractions. The driver of the car, myself, and two other witnesses in the vehicle went to the Monrovia Police station to file a complaint. Our experience at the police station was surreal. We were all split up and taken individually into different interview rooms where we were told we misunderstood the situation and that the officer had not done any of the things we reported. After over an hour we left thinking we had filed a complaint. When I returned to the Monrovia Police station to inquire about the status of the complaint, the Lieutenant who interviewed us pretended to have no idea what we were talking about. He was adamant that nobody had filed any complaint. Ah, memories.
Robert Rosia August 11, 2011 at 09:46 PM
Why Did She Wait So Long. Because She Waited So Long, Her Story Sounds Made Up.
TonyW August 11, 2011 at 11:27 PM
Hsinlei Shao is NOW just filing a lawsuit for an aleged incident in August 29 of 2009!? That was TWO years ago! You can't tell me that it takes TWO YEARS to file complaint. I am not in law enforcement, and am simply a Monrovian - but I question the validity of the claim (simply from the standpoint of time elapsed). I am looking forward to seeing the outcome of this once all statements are made, and the Monrovia Police Department has had a chance to present their side.
jake August 12, 2011 at 01:30 AM
I agree she should have not taken so long to report it, but I do believe it happen. I was pulled over and harassed myself.
Nicoline Conway August 12, 2011 at 03:50 PM
Could it be because statute of limitations run out at a certain time before filing a lawsuit?
Leif Anderberg August 12, 2011 at 06:04 PM
I just wish the police in Monrovia were a little more PR minded. I am a fan of BMW products - both cars and bikes. When I approached a motorcycle officer at the Shell station on Huntington drive asking him about his BMW bike, he treated me like I was a total idiot. What is wrong with these guys? A little niceness goes a long way. Remember the story about vinegar and honey.
Michael August 27, 2011 at 01:38 AM
Monrovia is a nice city...Monrovia PD, not so...Officers are treated bad by their Admin. and the Offices return the favor on the streets :-(
miguel September 04, 2011 at 09:45 PM
Monrovia PD does not have a good reputation. Most, I will not say all, are dirty. They are not friendly at all. We all (general public) are not thieves, abuse drugs etc., yet they treat everyone that way. If she's smart she will go to the FEDs and have MPD investigated.
Steve Buckner October 11, 2012 at 04:43 PM
$50,000.00 check was issued this week. Hummm

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