Street medic at May protest says APD officer fired beanbag round at his hands as he was helping someone

Austin Protests

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A street medic at a May 30 protest is suing the City of Austin and an unidentified Austin Police Department officer after he says the officer shot a beanbag round at his hand while he was trying to help others.

Steven Arawn’s lawsuit says he was volunteering at the demonstration outside APD Headquarters when officers started shooting beanbag rounds into a crowd of protesters on a hill near Interstate 35.

“APD officers shot the beanbag shotgun rounds at numerous completely innocent individuals assembled on the hill, even though were doing nothing wrong,” the lawsuit from Edwards Law reads.

Arawn knelt down to help a woman who was hit in the stomach, the lawsuit says, and that’s when the officer fired and hit Arawn’s hand.

“While Arawn was able to flee the area, the pain was so intense it caused him to vomit several times,” the lawsuit reads.

The lawsuit claims months later, Arawn has still not regained full function in his hand.

Arawn is suing for past and future medical expenses and economic damages due to the potential loss of wages and earnings because of his injuries.

A City of Austin spokesperson sent this statement to KXAN about Arawn’s lawsuit:

“The city continues to review the claims related to the May 2020 protests. Because there were many individuals involved in the events, it takes time to sort through everything. The Police Department, along with the Office of Police Oversight, and the Law Department will review each claim, and the city will work directly with the individual protestors and their lawyers.”

Another street medic also filed a lawsuit in September, after she says an APD officer fired a beanbag round at her hands as she was trying to help a protester who was hurt. The medic, 43-year-old Maredith Drake, says it happened at the May 31 demonstrations outside APD Headquarters.

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