Earlier this year in the Atlanta suburb of East Point, a young man was killed when he was tased repeatedly and unnecessarily by two police officers. According to a report by one local news source, the police were responding to a domestic disturbance when one of the parties fled on foot. The police chased him for a while, and then the man collapsed from exhaustion. It was at this point that the police used their tasers on him.
Evidently, they tased the man over a dozen times, although he did not pose an immediate threat to the officers. Indeed, at the time of the tasing the man was handcuffed. As a result of this event, the man was taken to the hospital, where he died of “hypertensive cardiovascular disease exacerbated by physical exertion.”
In response to their loved one’s death, the man’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the City of East Point. In a settlement that became public just this week, the man’s family will receive $1 million from the city, the maximum allowed by the city’s insurance policy.
As a result of the incident, one of the officers involved has been fired and the other has voluntarily resigned. The incident is still under investigation, although neither former officer is currently facing any criminal charges.
The police department has voluntarily opted to retrain their officers on when the use of a taser is permitted. However, this does little to answer the family’s questions as to why such force was employed against their loved one.
Wrongful Death Actions in Georgia
A wrongful death action is a lawsuit brought by the family of an accident victim seeking compensation for their loss. Most often, the cause of action is brought by the surviving spouse of the accident victim. However, if the accident victim is not married, the child of the accident victim can bring the lawsuit.
In some cases, an accident victim will have neither a spouse nor a child. In this situation, the executor of the accident victim’s estate will be able to bring the suit in favor of the victim’s next of kin.
In order to prevail in a wrongful death suit, a plaintiff must establish that the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions of the defendant caused the death of their loved one. This is often done by proving that the defendant violated some kind of duty of care that was owed to the accident victim.
Have You Lost a Loved One to Another’s Negligence?
Wrongful death suits can be a complicated and timely process, and it is important that all deadlines are strictly adhered to. To increase your chances of success, it is crucial that you retain an experienced and diligent attorney. The attorney can assist you with making sure that all culpable parties are held responsible, attend all legal proceedings, and negotiate with the other party. Furthermore, our attorneys are skilled at handling wrongful death suits and will work hard to keep your stress level as low as possible, given the circumstances. If your loved one has passed because of the negligent actions of another and you would like to bring a wrongful death suit, contact one of our dedicated attorneys at 770-284-3727 to schedule a free initial consultation.
See Related Blog Posts
Another Drunk Driving Crash, This Time in Lumpkin County, Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, September 17, 2014.
Georgia Woman Dies in South Carolina Accident, Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, October 13, 2014.