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Salem, OR Man Awarded $3M for Wrongful Arrest, Excessive Force by Officer

A Salem man was awarded more than $3 million in damages Thursday after a jury decided he was wrongly accused of auto theft by a Salem Police Officer who jurors said used excessive force during the arrest.

Surveillance video shows Officer David Baker pulling into a parking lot on the night of Sept. 17, 2021. Court documents say Chris Garza was working on a car with two other people at OK Tire of Salem.

“The first thing he asked me was if I was stealing the car, I felt that I was being racially profiled, I was called a thief,” Garza said.


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