Lawsuit Says Police Used Excessive Force

Arrest leads to injuries, lawsuit — and a grand jury indictment


A Payson man has filed a complaint against the Payson Police Department, town and three police officers claiming officers used excessive force against him late last year.

Brandon Lee Lewis’ lawyer, Michael Harper, filed the civil compliant with the Gila County Superior Court on July 13.

The complaint names officers Justin Deaton, Jessie Davies and Lorenzo Ortiz, the Town of Payson and the police department.

After his arrest, a grand jury indicted Lewis on charges of aggravated assault on an officer, resisting arrest and criminal damage.

The complaint states that after Lewis, 24, drove over a small retaining wall near his apartment complex on Oct. 30, officers started a field sobriety test.

“Apparently upset by a perceived lack of cooperation, and without any reasonable justification, defendants Davies, Ortiz and Deaton took Mr. Lewis to the ground and assaulted him while he lay in the middle of the road,” the complaint states.

The complaint claims Lewis suffered significant injuries from the actions of the officers.

The Roundup requested a copy of the police report, which includes the officers’ accounts of the evening’s event, but had not received it as of press time. The paper will publish a follow-up story when it is released.

Harper said a witness provided an audio recording of the events.

Police Chief Don Engler and Payson Town Attorney Tim Wright said they could not comment on the case because it is an ongoing legal matter.

Lewis has had other brushes with the law, according to court records. In 2006, he was found guilty of disorderly conduct and underage consumption and in 2007, shoplifting and underage consumption.


Lori Burke 4 years, 6 months ago

It's a shame that when Police do their job and try to ensure that our streets are safe from impared drivers, they get accused of doing something wrong. I am glad they are out there. I know some of the officers named and know they are not violent individuals. The story appears to be slanted on only one person's point of view. News stories should be objective in nature and report on all of the facts, not on conjecture of one that has everything to gain in a story like this.


Maggie Meares 4 years, 5 months ago

It is a shame when police step over the line and think that they have someone on a dark street with no one watching, that they can cross the line. What happened here is WRONG! It will all come out in court I am sure. Wait for the video/audio! Wait for the witnesses that were there! "Everything will come out into the light"... Police are "trained" not to do what they did! They are trained to "refrain" from doing what they did! They are there to protect and serve, not beat the crud out of someone for no reason! DO WE WANT THEM TO DO THIS TO THE ASU STUDENTS OR OTHER COLLEGE STUDENTS THAT MAY CHOOSE THE PAYSON CAMPUS FOR THEIR HIGHER EDUCATION?? I THINK NOT!!!


Lori Burke 4 years, 5 months ago

Exactly! Police are trained. Trained to apprehend those that break the law, that drive impaired and put us all in danger. Trained to keep the streets safe, and trained to take someone down when they are resisting arrest, and acting out violently. I am sure it will all come out in court. ASU students and parents should be comforted to know that our officers are there keeping the streets safe. I know I am.


Maggie Meares 4 years, 5 months ago

No need to argue with someone who is not famaliar and doesn't know the facts in the case. I do...I know that PPD will be sank! Starting at the top! I know those who lied! God forbid I go out to dinner and have one margarita and try to drive home....I certainly don't want a cracked eye socket....and who said Brandon was resisting arrest...that is not the case...the proof is in the SD CARD....and I have heard it, you have not my dear! So that is all that I will comment on this, because people in this town are growing tired of PPD B.S., Lies, Cover Ups, In Ability to Catch Crooks and It Taking A Local Resident to Catch A Thief....time for the U.S. Marshalls and the Attorney General of the State of Arizonz to "CLEAN HOUSE"...PPD is the laughing stock of Law Enforcement!!! Enough Said.


Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.