Ex-Argo sues Peel police

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:54 AM ET

A former football player with the Argos and Tiger-Cats has launched a lawsuit against members of the Peel Regional Police Service.

Oreth (Orlando) Bowen filed the claim yesterday, alleging he was assaulted and maliciously prosecuted by Peel officers and that cocaine was planted on him during his arrest.

It's expected the lawsuit will contend the incident was racially motivated, and that Bowen will be seeking a seven-figure sum in damages.

Full details of the lawsuit will be revealed today by Bowen and his counsel.

Bowen, a 30-year-old linebacker who played mostly on special teams for the Argos and Tiger-Cats from 2000-2003, was arrested and charged by two officers following an incident on March 26, 2004. He was alleged to be in possession of 1.7 grams of cocaine in a parking lot in Mississauga. He also was charged with assaulting the officers.

He contended his innocence from the time of the arrest and insisted the cops planted the cocaine. On Dec. 22, 2005, Bowen was acquitted of all charges. Ontario Court Justice Ford Clements found "inconsistencies and contradictions" between the police officers in the chronology of events in the arrest and that their evidence was "incredible and not worthy of belief."

One of the arresting officers, Const. Sheldon Cook, faces criminal charges of trafficking cocaine and breach of trust in Brampton.


Videos

Photos