According to the grand jury, Lazarde assaulted Ventura Martinez Perez and Victor Rodriguez on Nov. 12, 1989, depriving the two construction workers of their right to due process of law and to be free from unreasonable force.
Lazarde also was charged with falsely accusing both men of simple assault and terroristic threats, again in violation of their civil rights.
The two men, both 27, have since been acquitted of all charges.
The grand jury didn't give any reason for Lazarde's alleged behavior.
But a source familiar with the investigation said Rodriguez had exchanged angry words with Lazarde the night before, after Lazarde arrested Rodriguez' brother for murder, and Lazarde bore a grudge against Rodriguez as a result of the argument.
"Lazarde didn't like it," the source said, and was waiting when Rodriguez and Perez left the bar.
Lazarde, who claims the two men threatened him outside the bar, was fired in 1991 by then-Police Commissioner Willie Williams for using unnecessary force against Rodriguez and Perez.
At the time, Williams said Lazarde assaulted Perez outside the taproom and, moments later, assaulted Rodriguez, who was handcuffed at the time, inside a patrol wagon, and tried to get two other officers who witnessed the assault on Rodriguez to lie for him.
The two officers, Annette Feliciano and Susan Jasionowski, testified that Lazarde hit Rodriguez with either a nightstick or flashlight.
Rodriguez later needed one stitch to close a wound to his head, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Carlos A. Martir, the case prosecutor.
Martinez refused hospital treatment, the prosecutor said.
The Fraternal Order of Police has contended that officials were making a scapegoat of Lazarde, in an effort to show the department could police itself in the wake of the Rodney King beating in Los Angeles.
A labor arbitrator ruled last year that Lazarde should be reinstated, contending the city took too long, about 17-months, to discipline the officer. The city has appealed the ruling to Commonwealth Court.
During the arbitration proceeding, Lazarde testified that he pushed Rodriguez after Rodriguez spat on him inside the patrol wagon.
The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office refused to prosecute Lazarde for the alleged assault.
If convicted of the federal civil rights charges, Lazarde could be jailed for up to 26 years and fined $1.1 million, Martir said.
The last time Philadelphia police officers were convicted of civil rights violations in federal court here was in March 1978 when six homicide detectives were found guilty by a jury of coercing a confession from a murder
suspect who later was exonerated.