An Oklahoma woman is suing her local police station after an officer attacked her with his taser while she was handcuffed in jail - and it was all caught on tape. The shocking video shows City of McAlester police officer Sterling Taylor-Santino stunning Nakina Williams in the chest at point-blank range while she is restrained inside Pittsburgh County Jail.
He continues to use the weapon on the woman, who had been arrested for drunken behavior, for what seems like minutes as she runs around the booking area, attempting to get away from the taser. Mr Taylor-Santino has been charged with assault using a dangerous weapon in the June 24 incident but Ms Williams, 27, is now seeking more than $2 million in damages, according to NewsOK.com.
According to the lawsuit, the officer used excessive force as he dealt with the handcuffed woman, who is less than 5 feet tall.
Ms Williams allegedly spat at the officer before he walked up to her and pressed the taser against her left breast.
The video shows a bolt of bluish-white light as the officer fires the weapon.
Ms Williams doesn't fall to the ground during the attack but her lawyer claims the real damage was done when officers removed the taser's barbs, out of the view of CCTV.
'They sat her down on a bench and yanked them out... they were embedded in her upper-left breast, if you can imagine,' Jeremy Beaver said.
'They were supposed to take her to the hospital to remove those.'
The lawsuit also claims that Mr Taylor-Santino lied on a report he filed in connection with the taser episode, not realising the whole incident had been caught on CCTV.
'In his 'use of force report,' (Mr Taylor-Santino) sought to cover up and/or conceal his actions... by omitting that (Ms Williams) was handcuffed when she was shot with the taser,' the suit alleges.
'As a result, he was found to have acted 'within policy' by police department officials.'
The suit also draws attention to the officer's 'violent work history.' It claims he has been involved with and instigated a 'disproportionate number' of violent conflicts with suspects compared to his colleagues.
'Some of these resulted in allegations of excessive force being made by the suspects,' the suit reads.
The officer was suspended for two weeks but remains on the police force. He has pleaded not guilty in Pittsburgh County District Court.
Mr Beaver said the criminal charges suggested his client's federal court case would be successful.
'It just reaffirmed our position that she's a victim of a crime,' Mr Beaver said. 'We felt that from the beginning, so when they filed the charges, yes, that just confirmed what we've thought all along.'