June 11th, 2012|
The state of California and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) have been ordered by a federal judge to pay more than $2 million to the family of a man who was wrongfully killed by CHP officers. According to The Sacramento Bee, the incident occurred on August 24th, 2008, in eastern San Joaquin County.
Police reports indicate that officers received a call of illegal street racing occurring on the evening of the incident. When they arrived, the victim, who had been drinking that day, was parked at the location of the alleged racing. When officers approached the victim’s vehicle, he accelerated and fled the scene. A short chase ensued and ended when the victim’s vehicle became disabled in a ditch.
Officers state that the victim then began shifting and rolling the truck back and forth between drive and reverse in an effort to free the truck from the ditch. That is when they said they became fearful for their lives and shot the man six times.
The family of the victim filed a California wrongful death lawsuit against the state and it’s departments on the grounds of expert testimony based on bullet trajectory that revealed the officers were never in any danger when they opened fire on the unarmed 21-year-old victim.