Last December, the city of Los Angeles watched on live television as a disabled 51-year old veteran led Los Angeles police on a high-speed chase in a brand new Corvette. After getting out of his car, the man, who was unarmed, was shot to death by police. Now the Los Angeles City Council has agreed to pay $5 million to the victim’s family to settle a wrongful death lawsuit filed in May.
The police chase involved three different agencies and lasted quite a long time. At the end of the chase, Brian Beaird emerged from his Corvette and began to stumble away, but was instantly shot. Beaird did not appear to be armed at the time of the shooting, and no weapons were recovered at the scene of the shooting.
During the chase, Beaird called his family and mentioned that he didn’t know why he was being chased. It appears that the chase began because of Beaird’s reckless driving. The live television broadcast showed the Corvette speeding through red lights and stop signs.
Regardless of the cause of the chase, police clearly went beyond reasonable force in dealing with Beaird after the end of the chase. He was unarmed and not likely to be a danger; he should have been apprehended, not shot. The court clearly agrees, hence the $5 million settlement.
If you have a loved one who was killed due to someone else’s negligence, you may need to seek compensation. Speak with a San Diego wrongful death attorney at Thorsnes, Bartolotta, McGuire for more information about your legal options and how to proceed with your case.