A Kansas City fireman was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer last year during a dispute with a cabbie. Now the fireman's widow and parents have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the officer.
According to local news affiliate KSHB 41, the firefighter and his wife had just been leaving their own wedding reception on November 30, 2013, when they decided to take a cab to their hotel at the Marriott Muehlebach, on 12th Street. Unbeknownst to the newlyweds, the cabbie had the meter running as the couple were discussing how to get the fireman's cousin home as well. When a dispute erupted over the rising fare, the cabbie allegedly called the man's wife "an inappropriate name," prompting the firefighter to punch him repeatedly before leaving for his hotel.
Security footage from the scene shows the fireman first entering the lobby of the hotel, then exiting the doors to walk down the alley near the hotel instead. An off-duty police officer on the scene followed the fireman down the alley, where eyewitness videos captured at the scene show the officer tackling the firefighter to the ground and kicking him several times. When the fireman retaliated, the officer shot him twice, killing the man.
The family's lawsuit alleges that the officer should have not pursued the fireman in the first place, as he was not on duty, was not a witness to the initial fight and didn't have any of his essential police equipment on hand, including a radio, baton, stun gun and pepper spray — any of which could have been used instead of a gun to diffuse the situation without loss of life.
The officer is accused of using excessive force and carelessness for not carrying the aforementioned police gear.
If you believe someone is at fault for the death of a loved one, contact the Kansas City attorneys of The Meyers Law Firm for the legal counsel you deserve.