Dimmick V. City Of Topeka Civil Case Heads To Trial

By: Suzie Gilbert / Kion Hudson Email
By: Suzie Gilbert / Kion Hudson Email

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- A civil case for a convicted kidnapper who was accidentally shot after he was taken into custody, will go to trial.

Jesse Dimmick is seeking damages from the City of Topeka, and Topeka Police Sgt. Guy Gardner, a law enforcement officer whose weapon discharged while arresting Dimmick in September 2009.

Judge Larry Hendricks heard motions in the case on Tuesday (9/4). Dimmick is seeking thousands in damages after Gardner's weapon accidentally went off while Dimmick was being taken into custody.

Dimmick's kidnapping victims could be called as witnesses, to testify against his credibility. Dimmick, 26, was fleeing a Colorado murder charge when he ended up at a home in Dover, where he kidnapped Jared and Lindsay Rowley.

Dimmick is serving nearly 11 years in prison for that conviction, and attorneys for the City of Topeka say the Rowleys saw the accidental shooting unfold. Dimmick's attorney says Dimmick surrendered to police, laying still on the ground, but the city's attorneys say Dimmick didn't get up right away when told. They say Dimmick created a sense of unease in officers, something that led to Gardner's weapon accidentally firing.

Judge Hendricks denied the city's request for summary judgement in the civil case. Hendricks says the Rowleys won't be allowed to rehash their kidnapping, something that could create sympathy for them among jurors.

Dimmick's suit seeks "in excess of $75,000" for personal injury.

Hendricks also questioned where the money will go if Dimmick is granted a settlement, as both parties say the hospital is demanding payment for Dimmick's medical expenses. The trial is set to begin Monday (9/10).


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