/  05.20.2021

The sister of Atatiana Jefferson, a Black woman who was fatally shot by a Dallas police officer, has filed a $10 million wrongful death lawsuit.

Ashely Carr filed the suit on behalf of her later sister in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas against Mayor Betsy Price, retired police Chief Ed Kraus, the city of Fort Worth and Aaron Dean, the former officer who killed Jefferson.

The suit alleges that Fort Worth failed to accurately train and discipline its police and that Kraus and Price “knew of the failures of the Fort Worth Police Department … but failed to take the necessary steps to rectify the failures and adequately protect the constitutional rights of the people of Fort Worth.” 

The lawsuit also pointed out Dean’s training records and “concerns about his abilities as a police officer.” They believe that the city’s failure to provide additional training led to Jefferson’s death.

Those “failures resulted in Defendant Dean failing to properly respond to the open-door call and instead sneak around the house with a gun drawn ready to shoot at the first figure that appeared in a window,” the suit claims.

Back in 2019, Jefferson was shot and killed by Officer Dean through her bedroom window as she played video games with her 8-year-old nephew. He responded to a call from Jefferson’s neighbor who claimed that her front door was wide open.

Police said that Dean’s body camera footage showed that he did not identify himself before taking fire. He reportedly looked into the window and yelled, “Put your hands up, show me your hands.” He then shot Jefferson as her nephew watched.

The ex-cop has since been charged with murder for the shooting. Last year, a judge set his tentative trial date for August. Dean and the city are also facing a wrongful death lawsuit from Jefferson’s biological father, aunt and another relative.


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