Former NFL linebacker Khaseem Greene has filed a federal lawsuit claiming authorities fabricated evidence linking him to a gun that was used in a shooting outside a nightclub in Elizabeth, New Jersey.
A grand jury indicted Greene on a gun charge on May 9, 2017, after Union County prosecutors said he handed the weapon to the shooter.
Hours later, he was released by the Kansas City Chiefs.
The prosecutors said they had surveillance video of Greene giving the gun to Jason Sanders, who fired it into a crowd outside the Allstar Night Club in December 2016. No one was injured.
They also said Sanders had given a statement implicating Greene.
Their case soon fell apart, however, and the charge against the former Rutgers star was dropped in July.
On Tuesday, Greene filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in New Jersey accusing the prosecutor’s office and the Elizabeth Police Department of “simultaneously manufacturing and fabricating false evidence in order to charge Plaintiff with a crime he did not commit,” according to The Associated Press.
Sanders — a career criminal with six felony convictions — initially told police that Greene handed him the gun, but in the same interview he said he had lied about Greene’s involvement, according to an audio recording Greene’s attorney, Joshua McMahon, provided to NJ.com.
“OK, well you can recant at another time. Not tonight,” one of the detectives reportedly told Sanders. “When the prosecutor’s office talks to you about your case you can say that wasn’t Khaseem.”
In spite of that, Union County prosecutors told the grand jury that Sanders had implicated Greene and that video existed of the gun handoff, according to NJ.com. The grand jury reviewed the case for 11 minutes before indicting Greene, the report said.
McMahon told NJ.com that the grand jury was shown neither the surveillance video — which the lawsuit says doesn’t exist — nor video of the Sanders interview.
In addition to seeking damages for humiliation and lost economic opportunity, Greene’s lawsuit asks the U.S. District Court to set up an independent monitor to oversee the Elizabeth Police Department.
“The discovery phase of this litigation will further reveal many other instances where (the department) … has allowed, condoned, and encouraged a systemic, ratified, and sanctioned policy of unlawful stops, searches, arrests, and acts of excessive and unreasonable force, wrongful arrests, racial profiling and malicious prosecution, only to fail to discipline personnel for such actions, much less properly supervise and train to prevent further abuses,” the lawsuit states, according to NJ.com.
Police and prosecutors have yet to comment on the lawsuit.
Greene was selected in the fourth round of the 2013 draft by the Chicago Bears and was with the team until his release in 2015. He then spent time with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Detroit Lions before landing in Kansas City.
Now 29, Greene wants to return to pro football and is in talks with the Canadian Football League, his attorney told NJ.com.
“He’s genuinely a really nice, good guy,” McMahon said. “He’s never been in trouble. Everything was going well out with the Chiefs and this happened.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.