St. Paul Approves Settlement In Deaf Driver’s Arrest

ST. PAUL (WCCO) — The St. Paul City Council has just approved a settlement in the case of a St. Paul man arrested after a routine traffic stop.

Doug Bahl says he was beaten by St. Paul Police officers when he asked the officers to communicate with him by writing.

Later, investigators with the St. Paul police department refused to interview him because he had asked for an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter.

Bahl ended up filing two lawsuits against St. Paul and Ramsey County and now the city has agreed to a settlement that will train its officers.

“The city will no longer refuse to interview or provide services to deaf people because they ask for an interpreter,” Bahl’s attorney, Rick Macpherson, said. “They will provide interpreters when that is necessary for effective communication. They will also be training all of its police officers about how to communicate with deaf people during street encounters.”

St. Paul will pay Bahl $20,000 in damages and $73,000 in legal fees.

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