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Denver case ruling cited in Dominique White lawsuit

A still from the body cam footage shows Topeka Police Officers removing a weapon from Dominique...
A still from the body cam footage shows Topeka Police Officers removing a weapon from Dominique White's pants(WIBW)
Published: Sep. 17, 2020 at 5:06 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - A Federal Appeals court ruling says courts must consider an officer’s perspective when reviewing use of force situations.

An attorney for two Topeka Police officers facing a civil lawsuit in the 2017 shooting death of Dominique White cites the ruling in a court filing this week.

Steven Pigg submitted the document to support his motion for summary judgment, to dismiss the case against officers Justin Mackey and Michael Cruse.

A July 30th Appeals court ruling in the Denver Police fatal shooting of a suspect reversed a lower court’s denial of summary judgment.

It states the lower court did not appreciate the facts must be viewed from an officer’s perspective, and that officers cannot be mind readers. They must resolve ambiguities with split second decisions.

The Appeals Court ruling also states a frame-by-frame analysis of video does not address the officers perspective on the incident.

White was shot and killed, while Cruse and Mackey were responding to a report of shots fired in Topeka’s Ripley Park.

They stopped White and saw a gun in his pocket. He ran as they tried to take it from him.

Prosecutors cleared the officers of criminal charges.

White’s family filed a federal lawsuit, claiming wrongful death and inadequate training.

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