Three years ago, a story out of Lorain County made international headlines – a man was falsely accused of pledging his allegiance to the terrorist group ISIS.
Today, Ahmed Al-Menhali’s lawsuit against police and a hotel goes to trial. Today is a procedural day in the trial. They will begin with jury selection before moving on to opening statements tomorrow morning.
In June 2016, body cam from Avon Police captured the entire incident. On this day, Al-Menhali was pinned to the ground, arrested and interrogated at a Marriott Hotel in Avon. He was sent to the hospital with injuries after this happened.
This all occurred after a hotel clerk called police claiming Al-Menhali was on the phone pledging his allegiance to ISIS. Police discovered the claims were false and that he was in town for a heart treatment at the Cleveland Clinic.
The City of Avon issued an apology to the man and the Muslim community.
Al-Menhali is suing the clerk, six Avon police officers and Marriott Hotels for discrimination. The lawsuit claims he was falsely accused based solely on the fact that he was an Arab man who was wearing traditional clothing and speaking Arabic.
Today’s jury selection began at 9 AM.