A jury has awarded $4 in damages for funeral expenses and pain and suffering in a case in which Florida police officer fatally shot a father of three through his garage door.
On January 14, 2014, Gregory Vaughn Hill Jr., 30, was shot and killed by a sheriff’s deputy in St. Lucie County, Florida. The officer had been called to a noise complaint about music coming from Hill’s property(Washington Post).
Four years later, a federal jury said that Hill was largely responsible for his own death, after his family brought wrongful-death lawsuit. The jury was asked to decide whether Hill’s constitutional rights had been violated and whether his estate should be awarded damages. The jury awarded the man’s family just $4.
“It’s heartbreaking,” Hill’s fiancée, Monique Davis, told the New York Times. “There are a lot of questions I want to ask.”
Officers claimed that Hill was armed at the time of the incident. A firearm was retrieved from the scene but it was found unloaded in Hill’s back pocket.
The jury said that the officer had not used excessive force. The jury awarded $4 in damages: $1 for funeral expenses and $1 for each child’s loss.
Through a spokeswoman, Judge Robin L. Rosenberg declined to comment on the case or release any information about the jurors.