Family seeks justice in alleged police brutality

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Michael Gordon Hollman said he did not want what happened to his father and nephew &8220;swept under the rug.&8221;

Hollman spent Monday with picket signs outside Selma City Hall. Then Monday night he was with his family before the City Council seeking answers for a brutal beating they allege Selma police officers inflicted on his nephew and father.

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Ruth Hollman, helped to the podium with her oxygen tank, told city officials said she wouldn&8217;t uphold her grandson or husband in any wrong. She says she witnessed what happened the night her 67-year-old husband and 20-year-old grandson were allegedly beaten in their own front yard.

Mayor James Perkins Jr. asked Chief Jimmy Martin to contact the Alabama Bureau of Investigations concerning the matter. Perkins had told the family, if wrongdoing was found, the officers &8212; not named by the police department &8212; would be punished.

Family members claim the officers overreacted, some with guns drawn, as they arrested the 20-year-old. The Hollman&8217;s claim police assaulted Walter Hollman when he attempted to get involved.

District Attorney Michael Jackson forwarded the case to the Alabama Attorney General&8217;s office. Michael Hollman said when he called the attorney general&8217;s office he was told they still don&8217;t have a copy of the ABI findings.

Councilman Cecil Williamson said he planned to contact the Civil Rights division of the U.S. Department of Justice for a full investigation of the police department.