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Wrongful Death May Be At The Hands Of The Police

The last person you think would kill another is a police officer. We expect them to protect and serve. Sometimes, that does not happen.

This is a rather disturbing case that involved a police officer shooting and killing a woman in a park more than three years ago. This wrongful death case was settled just recently for $500,000. While we were not involved in it, it is a good example of the many guises in which wrongful death may occur.

It was 2007 and 1:30 in the morning when a police officer shot and killed a 38-year-old woman in a park. The police records indicated that they had been called out to deal with a report of a woman who was supposedly threatening passengers on a bus with a butcher knife.

When the officer on duty got to the scene, he located the woman in the park and his report says that she lunged at him while holding the knife. He shot her several times. The woman’s young son filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the police, stating that his mother had turned her back to the officer with the intention of running or walking away from him when he opened fire.

If that were the case, then the officer would not have had a “reasonable” purpose to shoot and kill his mother. She was hit five times — twice in the back, once in the arm and twice in the chest. In addition to her older son, she left behind two minor children. The interesting thing about this case is how it was resolved. Once the case was before a jury and the evidence heard, the city’s lawyer negotiated the $500,000 settlement. It is hard to justify a shooting when the person was shot in the back.

The Internal Affairs Bureau cleared the officer that killed the woman and the shooting was classified as justified. Again, there are a number of different ways to play this case out, but the facts speak for themselves and you can pretty much draw your own conclusions.

Wrongful death lawsuits are about getting financial compensation for those left behind to carry on. They have already lost a loved one; they should not have to lose out financially as well.

If you have been in a situation like this and need legal counsel, contact an experienced New Hampshire injury lawyer with a track record in dealing with wrongful death cases. You need to know how to move forward, what to expect and how long it will take to get your case resolved. A good New Hampshire injury lawyer has those answers.

Charlie Donahue is a New Hampshire personal injury lawyer located in Keene. Donahue handles injury cases in New Hampshire and across the United States. To learn more about New Hampshire injury attorney, Charlie Donahue, visit

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