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Muslim Woman Who Said She Was Profiled, Attacked By Cops Could Get $160K From City

CTA surveillance footage showed the officers tackling her from behind and ripping off her hijab and face veil.

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DOWNTOWN — A Muslim woman who said a handful of officers assaulted her near a Downtown train platform in 2015 after assuming she had a bomb should be paid $160,000, city lawyers recommended Friday.

Police officers detained Itemid Al-Matar while she climbed the stairs of the State/Lake “L” station on July 4, 2015. CTA surveillance footage showed the officers tackling her from behind and ripping off her hijab and face veil.

Al Matar’s lawsuit claimed that she was taken to a nearby police station, where she was unlawfully strip searched. That federal lawsuit alleged excessive force, unlawful search, and a violation of her constitutional rights by the Chicago Police Department. She is being represented by Phillip J. Robertson, the trial attorney for the Council on American Islamic Relations.

Police charged Al Matar with disorderly conduct, reckless conduct and resisting police in connection with the incident, but was acquitted on all counts, according to the complaint.

City lawyers have also recommended paying $1 million to the family of Charles Edward Jones, who died in August 2015 while being held in the lockup at the Grand Crossing Police District Headquarters.

The lawsuit filed by Jones’ family said he asked for medical care and was ignored by officers.

In addition, aldermen will consider a recommendation from lawyers to pay $200,000 to former Chicago Fire Department Battalion Chief Ernie Pinkston, who claimed he was discriminated against because of his race and disability before being terminated in 2011.

The fire department has long faced allegations that racism is rampant within the department’s ranks, and that officials have not done enough to hire and promote African Americans.

The City Council’s Finance Committee is scheduled to consider all of the settlements at its meeting set for Tuesday. The full council could approve the settlements Wednesday.