Car Accident Attorney Gets $12M Settlement for Family of Teen ATV Rider Killed After Being Tasered by a Michigan State Trooper
By Dean I. Weitzman, Esq. on January 3rd, 2020
The family of a 15-year-old Detroit teenager has reached a $12 million settlement with the Michigan State Police after the boy died in an ATV crash in 2017 after he was Tasered by a state trooper through the window of a patrol car.
The teen, Damon Grimes, was riding the ATV on a street on Detroit’s east side on Aug. 26, 2017, when a state trooper fired a Taser at him from the passenger seat of a moving patrol car after he believed the teen was driving recklessly, according to a Dec. 27, 2019 story by The Detroit Free Press.
The boy’s ATV slammed into the back of a parked truck after he was shot by the Taser and he soon died from his injuries. It is not legal in Michigan to shoot a Taser from a moving vehicle, the story reported.
The former trooper who shot the boy, Mark Bessner, was sentenced in May of 2019 to 5 to 15 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter in connection with the boy’s death. The settlement also ends a federal lawsuit that had been filed by Damon’s family in U.S. District Court in Detroit against Bessner and two other troopers who allegedly helped to cover up the incident, the story reported.
“State Police revised its chase policy for ATVs in the aftermath of Damon’s death and stopped doing chases in Detroit involving traffic or misdemeanor violations,” according to the story. The policy was later adopted statewide.
The former trooper had a history of using excessive force and was reprimanded for using his Taser inappropriately, including on handcuffed suspects, the story continued.
The boy’s mother filed the wrongful death lawsuit against the state police after her son’s death.
Legal cases like this one occur around the nation every day and are examples of similar kinds of car crash cases that MyPhillyLawyer attorneys regularly work on tirelessly for our own clients. Often, we are not able to discuss the cases we are actively working on due to confidentiality requirements, so we discuss other relevant cases in the news such as this one to illustrate the legal situations people find themselves in every day.
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We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.
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