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Agim escaped the war in Kosovo and later helped resettle refugees in Utah.

Though he has recovered from the horrors of his uprooted past, Agim claims the nightmares that plague him now are the result of an assault by an off-duty Salt Lake City police officer.

Agim - who asked that only his first name be used out of fear of retaliation by other police officers - claimed an assault occurred after a pick-up game of basketball turned sour.

Marcus Barrett, 24, was charged last week in West Valley City Justice Court with assault, unlawful detention and disorderly conduct - all misdemeanors - in connection with the Aug. 29 incident.

Barrett could not be reached for comment Wednesday, but Salt Lake City police spokeswoman Robyn Snyder said he has been on paid administrative since Aug. 30 pending an internal affairs investigation.

Agim said he was playing basketball at Golds Gym in West Valley City near 3500 West and 3500 South on Aug. 29 when the game got heated in its final moments. Barrett started playing rough, Agim told The Salt Lake Tribune.

The 21-year-old Agim said he responded to the rough play, and the aggression escalated until Barrett took a swing and the two wrestled to the floor. While two other men allegedly held Agim down, Barrett allegedly punched him in the stomach and chest. Players stopped the fight and Agim, shaken from the fight, decided it was time to go home.

But he said he was confronted again in the parking lot by Barrett and the two men, whom Agim assumes were Barrett's friends.

While he was trying to back his car from a parking stall, he said, the men pounded on his windows and called him names. Barrett retreated and reappeared with his police cruiser, blocking Agim from leaving.

A criminal complaint states Barrett deployed the vehicle during the altercation and "used unlawful force and violence against Agim by shoving him to the ground and hitting him repeatedly with a closed fist."

West Valley City police declined to discuss the incident, but the charges state Barrett "engaged in violent or tumultuous behavior by repeatedly yelling and fighting with the victim in a public place."

Trapped in his car and fearful for his life, Agim dialed 911. For the next five or six minutes, Agim said, Barrett and his associates yelled at him and tried to remove him from the car by pulling him through the window. Several West Valley City police officers arrived at the scene during the next hour, and Agim was repeatedly questioned.

He said one of those officers tried to persuade him to drop it by saying it was his word against Barrett's and that Barrett was a cop and would prevail.

But Agim told police he wanted to press charges. A couple of days later, he recounted the incident to investigators. He learned about the formal charges on Tuesday.

A server in a Salt Lake City restaurant, Agim said the violence was a stark contrast to the work he has done in Utah with the Young Refugees for World Peace, a group now known as the Utah Peace Institute.

He said he has sought to educate refugees about the United States, and he often speaks in public schools about his experience fleeing war-torn Kosovo.

Agim, who attended Highland High School, was honored by the National Crime Prevention Council for his work in refugee resettlement, according to Agim and the minutes from a Salt Lake City School Board meeting.

An ethnic Albanian from the Serbian province of Kosovo, Agim was featured in the book Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth by Joyce and Leslie Kelen in which he recounted the horror of having his family's home stormed by Serbian soldiers.