Dec 15, 2017
Chicago, IL – The City of Chicago wants to sue the estate of a man fatally shot by Chicago police because his actions resulted in the death of a bystander.
Lawyers for the city of Chicago said Quintonio LeGrier was shot by police after he attacked an officer with a bat, and that he should be held responsible for the accidental death of 55-year-old Bettie Jones that occurred as a result of his action.
The city’s attorneys filed a motion in Cook County on Thursday, and asked for the court’s approval to sue the estate of the deceased 19-year-old LeGrier.
The incident occurred at approximately 4:30 a.m. on Dec. 26, 2015, when Chicago Police Department (CPD) Officer Robert Rialmo and his partner responded to reports of a disturbance at an apartment where LeGrier was staying, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Jones, who lived in a downstairs apartment, opened the door for officers and directed them to an upper-floor apartment.
But as officers began climbing the stairs, LeGrier charged down at them with a baseball bat raised over his head, State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office revealed, according to the Chicago Tribune.
As the officers quickly backed down the stairs and onto the front landing, Officer Rialmo fired at LeGrier, who had continued his pursuit of the officers.
LeGrier was hit by six of the eight bullets fired by Officer Rialmo.
Jones, who was standing behind LeGrier when the altercation took place, was shot once in the chest.
Jones and LeGrier both died from their gunshot wounds.
The city’s proposed lawsuit blamed LeGrier for “negligent acts and/or omissions,” and noted that he failed to follow police commands, advanced on officers, swung the bat at police, and failed to take medication to control his mental illness, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Basileios Foutris, an attorney for the LeGrier family, said that there are currently no assets in LeGrier’s estate, and that Officer Rialmo was the only one responsible for Jones’ death.
“It’s not enough to kill people,” Foutris said. “Now you gotta go ahead and sue them.”
The State’s Attorney’s Office determined that Officer Rialmo would not be criminally charged for the justified shooting, and the Civilian Office of Police Accountability has yet to decide whether or not the shooting was justified per department policy.
The case will go before the court on Friday at 11 a.m., the Chicago Sun Times reported.