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by Danny Cross
Lawsuit against Sgt. Andrew Mitchell filed one day before anniversary of shooting
The estate of David
“Bones” Hebert filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against Cincinnati
Police Sgt. Andrew Mitchell alleging wrongful death and battery in
the April 18, 2011, shooting death of the 40-year-old musician. The
plaintiff in the case is listed as Paul Carmack, administrator of the
estate of David Hebert.
The lawsuit claims that
Hebert was complying with instructions given by an investigating
officer when he was shot and killed by Mitchell. The suit claims
excessive force was used and that Mitchell “acted intentionally,
recklessly, wantonly, and with deliberate indifference to the
constitutional rights of Mr. Hebert.”
Hebert was shot and
killed by Mitchell after officers responded to a
911 call around 3 a.m. during which an intoxicated man alleged to
have been robbed by Hebert and assaulted with a pirate sword. Hebert
was located sitting on a sidewalk on Chase Avenue in Northside about
10 minutes later. During subsequent questioning, officers say Hebert
drew a knife and moved toward an investigating officer, causing
Mitchell to believe the officer’s life was in danger. Mitchell shot
Hebert twice, killing him. Toxicology reports found Hebert to have a
blood alcohol content of 0.33 at the time of his death, along with
marijuana and psychedelic mushrooms in his system.
cleared police of any wrongdoing, but Friends of Bones says the facts
from the investigations show Hebert complied with police
orders during the encounter.
The lawsuit demands a
trial by jury and compensatory and punitive damages, along with
attorney’s fees, costs, disbursements and additional relief as the
court deems proper. The suit, which is embedded below, was published
on the “Friends of Bones” website (www.friendsofbones.org).
The incident has drawn
considerable media attention, especially this week in conjunction
with the anniversary of the shooting.
Enquirer on Monday published a story titled “Reports: Cops came
too close in killing of David 'Bones' Hebert” comparing accounts of
the incident in public records to standard Cincinnati Police
Department guidelines, which concluded that “police officers got
dangerously close and failed to have a plan before approaching
Hebert, who police thought was carrying a sword or large knife.”
Magazine’s May issue will feature a story, “Salvaging Bones,”
which is subtitled: “David Hebert was a lot of things: the
dreadlocked maker of burritos; a punk rocker; a womanizing, tatted-up
former Jesus freak with a kind heart and a wild streak. What he
wasn’t was a guy you’d expect to find dead at the end of a police
Sept. 14, 2011 published a story titled “Digging Up Answers for
Bones” in which friends and family of Hebert alleged that Hamilton
County Prosecutor Joe Deters’ closing of the investigation was
CityBeat on May
4, 2011 published a story titled “A Shot in the Dark,” detailing
the early questions that surrounded the incident.