Andrew Brown Jr.'s family sues police for shooting death

July 14 (UPI) -- The family of a North Carolina man shot and killed by police in April filed a $30 million lawsuit Wednesday against several law enforcement officials.

The federal civil rights lawsuit accuses officers of "reckless disregard" for Andrew Brown Jr.'s life.


The suit names nine officials, including Pasquotank County Sheriff Tommy Wooten II and Dare County Sheriff Doug Doughtie, and several deputies. It was filed by Lillie Brown Clark, Brown's aunt and the administrator of his estate.

Pasquotank County District Attorney Andrew Womble declined to charge any of the deputies involved, saying they "reasonably" believed it was necessary to use deadly force against Brown.

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The deputies attempted to arrest Brown on drug charges, approaching him while he sat in a vehicle. Investigators said Brown tried to drive his vehicle away to escape police, using his vehicle as a "deadly weapon."

Brown's family, though, saw one 20-second video clip of the shooting, and said it showed Brown had his hands on his steering wheel when officers opened fire on him April 21. Family attorney Chantel Cherry-Lassiter said Brown posed no threat to officers at the time he was shot.


A private autopsy showed Brown was shot five times, once in the back of the head.

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The deputies shot at Brown "with shocking and willful indifference to Brown's rights and with conscious awareness that it could cause Brown severe bodily harm or death," the lawsuit states.

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