Atatiana Jefferson’s Sister Files Federal Wrongful Death Lawsuit – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday alleges the city of Fort Worth took no action to prevent the fatal shooting of Atatiana Jefferson by a Fort Worth police officer in October 2019.
The unlawful death sentence has been filed in the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas against Aaron Dean, the officer accused of fatally shooting Jefferson, the city of Fort Worth, retired Police Chief Ed Kraus and Mayor Betsy Price.
The lawsuit lists Jefferson’s sister Ashley Carr as plaintiff and is seeking more than $ 10 million in damages at the time of the trial.
NBC 5 has contacted the City of Fort Worth for comment. Bob Gill, an attorney for Dean, said he was unable to comment on the case due to a court-imposed gag order.
It is alleged that, among other things, the city did not properly train and discipline its officials and that Kraus and Price “knew of the Fort Worth Police Department’s mistakes … but did not take the necessary steps to correct them and appropriate. ” protect the constitutional rights of the people of Fort Worth. ”
The lawsuit, citing Dean’s training records and “concerns about his abilities as a police officer,” alleges that Jefferson’s death was caused by failure to provide further training.
It also lists more than a dozen incidents between 2005 and 2019 indicating a “consistent and systematic failure to properly train and monitor officers in the proper use of force” and de-escalation techniques.
It also mentions the findings of a panel of experts formed after Jefferson’s death that stated that “Officials do not consistently adhere to guidelines to avoid violence in encounters with members of the community and that these guidelines are not enforced by the department” The department’s de-escalation policy is not being followed or is improperly enforced.
These “errors resulted in the defendant Dean not responding properly to the Open
Call the door and instead sneak through the house with gun drawn to shoot the first figure to appear in a window, “claims the suit.
Jefferson was playing video games with her 8-year-old nephew at her mother’s house on East Allen Avenue on October 12, 2019 when a neighbor saw the front door ajar and called the police emergency number.
They heard a noise in the back yard and Jefferson took a gun from her purse and headed for a window. Dean, who had answered the call and was in the back yard, ordered her to put her hands up before she shot in the window and fatally hit Jefferson.
Dean, who has resigned, has been charged with murder. Last year a judge provisionally set an August date for Dean’s trial.
In November, Jefferson’s biological father Jerome Eschor, Aunt Venitta Body and relative Arita Eschor filed a separate federal lawsuit against the city and the official.