Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

75-year-old sues Pinellas sheriff over 2005 Tasering

Deputies came to Charles Faybik's apartment in 2005 afraid he was going to shoot himself.

They wound up pushing in his door, knocking the 75-year-old to the ground, and zapping him with three separate Taser guns.

Friday, attorney John Trevena filed a suit against Pinellas Sheriff Jim Coats. The five-count suit in Pinellas circuit court claims the deputies violated Faybik's rights by entering his house and using excessive force to restrain him.

The shock lingers, Faybik said.

"It kind of changes you in a lot of ways, you know, mentally and everything like that," he said. "I'm not into the things I used to be into."

On Dec. 28, 2005, Faybik was talking to a friend about being lonely and wondered aloud about what he might do with a gun. (He did not have one.)

The friend called the Sheriff's Office, which sent six deputies to Faybik's Madeira Beach apartment. Authorities called to coax him outside, but couldn't get an answer. The lawsuit says they called the wrong number.

Three times, deputies knocked, but Faybik, who is blind in one eye and partially deaf, didn't respond, the lawsuit said.

The deputies began to force the door, which is when Faybik realized someone was trying to enter. He cracked the door. He later said he thought it was a robbery.

One of his hands was out of sight, so two deputies flung the door open. Another deputy knocked Faybik backward with a shield. Then three deputies shot Tasers into him. The lawsuit says the shots took place after it was clear he was not armed.

Sheriff's spokeswoman Marianne Pasha said she could not talk about the lawsuit or the facts of the case. A month after the incident, the Sheriff's Office said the deputies acted appropriately.

Two of the deputies faced a review by their shift commander and were exonerated, Pasha said.

The Sheriff's Office guidelines for the Taser say age should be considered, but do not prohibit its use against senior citizens.

The lawsuit argues deputies were not properly trained or supervised and showed "wanton disregard" for Faybik's rights.

"There is constitutional justification for entering a home without a warrant to, as the Supreme Court says, prevent violence and restore order," said Robert Batey, a criminal law professor at Stetson University College of Law. "Whether damages will be forthcoming depends upon the judicial evaluation of how egregious the behavior of the officers was."

Jonathan Abel can be reached at jabel@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4157.

75-year-old sues Pinellas sheriff over 2005 Tasering 06/27/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 2, 2008 10:00pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Related Group breaks ground for complex on old Tampa Tribune site

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — Miami-based Related Group has broken ground on a 400-unit apartment complex planned on the site of the former Tampa Tribune building in downtown Tampa.

    From left, Related Group executive associate Arturo Penaa, Jorge Perez, center, founder and CEO of the Related Group, Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Steve Patterson, the President of Related Development dig their shovels  during the groundbreaking ceremony of the 400 unit Riverwalk Manor apartment complex on site of the old Tampa Tribune building on Wednesday. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]
  2. Robert Pattinson is better than 'Twilight.' 'Good Time' proves it

    Movies

    INDIE FLICKS:

    GOOD TIME

    Don't judge actors by the books they cover on screen. It appears truer with each performance that two of our finest got their starts with the Twilight franchise.

    Robert Pattinson hooks viewers in Good Time, an inventive crime story.
  3. Deputies: Man feared other man was going to "steal his girlfriend" before armed assault

    Crime

    ST. PETERSBURG

    Deputies: Rifle pulled in fight over girlfriend

  4. Largo police investigating U.S. 19 crash that killed woman, 34

    Accidents

    LARGO — Traffic homicide investigators are looking into a crash Wednesday morning that killed a woman and closed the southbound lanes of U.S. 19 for a few hours.

  5. Harvey regenerates into tropical depression, sets aim on Texas coastline

    Hurricanes

    The system moving toward Texas has regenerated into Tropical Depression Harvey, prompting storm surge and hurricane watches on portions of the Lone Star State's coast, according to the National Hurricane …

    [National Hurricane Center]