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West Lafayette Police lawsuit


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  • West Lafayette Police lawsuit

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    Convicted robber Brandon M. Winters spent two weeks recovering at an Indianapolis hospital and underwent a number of surgeries to repair his jaw after getting shot in the face two years ago by a West Lafayette police officer.

    Today, 22-year-old Winters has no upper teeth and suffers from chronic pain caused by a bullet that entered his neck and exited through his mouth, according to one of his attorneys, Trent McCain.

    On Tuesday, McCain and attorney Alger Boswell filed a lawsuit on Winters' behalf in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana against the city of West Lafayette and police Officer David Smith.

    The shooting took place as Winters was hiding in bushes just outside Wabash Landing Apartments.

    That evening, Smith was one of several police officers responding to a 911 call from a young man who said he was jumped near the John T. Myers Pedestrian Bridge by a man holding what appeared to be a silver gun.

    It was the third report of a robbery or attempted robbery in the downtown and Tapawingo Park area within a 24-hour period involving suspects with similar descriptions.

    Victims reported being kicked and beaten. Wallets and cellphones were among the items taken.

    No handgun on Winters or in the immediate area was ever found, despite searches throughout Wabash Landing, Tapawingo Park and even in the Wabash River.

    An internal shooting review board cleared Smith, and the prosecutor declined to pursue criminal charges, on grounds that Smith had reason to believe Winters was armed.

    During his guilty plea hearing, Winters admitted in court to partially covering his face and making motions as though he was armed during the robbery.

    Winters, who pleaded guilty to robbery, attempted robbery, possession of cocaine and other felonies, currently is serving a 20-year sentence in the Indiana Department of Correction.

    Winters' lawsuit is largely based on claims that Smith used excessive force because no weapon was ever recovered. Allegations against West Lafayette are that the city encourages a "code of silence" among police officers and fails to property investigate when shootings occur.

    "He shot an unarmed man in the face," McCain said. "They didn't try to shot to disarm him ... or to wound him. That was a head shot. They shot to kill that man.

    Another lawsuit based on the concept officers should be required to "shot to disarm." I'll try to keep an eye on how this case plays out.

  • #2
    Boo ****ing hoo. Engaging in criminal behavior, check. Getting shot by the police as a result, check. Suing the police because you didn't like the outcome, **** off.


    • #3
      Play stupid games win stupid prizes comes to my mind. That law suit ain't going anywhere. By the way I hope dumb *** stays in pain for his entire IDOC stay.
      "Laws that forbid the carrying of arms. . . disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - Thomas Jefferson


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