Portsmouth, New Hampshire, residents may have heard about a recent shooting involving a 45-year-old woman's wrongful death The woman was allegedly shot in self-defense by a police officer on Sept. 30, 2013, but her family doesn't believe that was the case. Now, her family is suing the state over the wrongful death of the woman.
According to a release from the New Hampshire Attorney General, the trooper in question had apparently thought that the woman was planning to run him over with her car. He opened fire on her in self-defense, which he believes justified his use of force. The family of the victim disagrees. They believe that the use of force in this case may not have been justified, and they have hired a lawyer to investigate.
A 13-page report has been released that discusses the incident. It states that the woman was stopped in a routine traffic stop around 6:20 p.m. It's alleged that the woman suddenly drove away to avoid being found out as a habitual offender with a suspended license. The officer who pulled her over claimed that she nearly hit a pedestrian and a few cars when she sped away.
Police reported that the woman then led them on a chase along Interstate 93. Troopers stated that they had been rammed when trying to box her in. When one officer exited his vehicle to approach her, he claims that she rammed his car, backed up, and then drove directly toward him. He shot at her eleven times, according to their reports, with four of the bullets striking her.
The interesting thing is that one witness has allegedly given a different story about what happened, and the family's lawyer is claiming that there is enough evidence for a wrongful death lawsuit.
In cases such as this one, it can be difficult to know what to do as a family; however, an experienced personal injury attorney can provide advice and options. Families who have lost a loved one due to someone else's negligence or recklessness have the right to seek compensation through the civil court system.
Source: Concord Monitor, "Slain woman's family to sue over officer-involved shooting" Megan Doyle, Oct. 17, 2013