Two officers who shot and killed Topeka man won’t be added to lawsuit

photo by: Associated Press

In this Sept. 28, 2017, file photo, Topeka, Kan., police officers walk near the location where Dominique White was shot and killed by police officers in Topeka, Kan. (Phil Anderson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via AP, File)

TOPEKA — Two Topeka police officers who shot and killed a man in 2017 will not be added to a lawsuit filed by the man’s family.

The family of Dominique White had sought to add a wrongful death count against Justin Mackey and Michael Cruse in their lawsuit against Topeka’s government.

The attorneys acknowledged this week that a legal rule prevents them from pursuing the wrongful death count against the officers, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

U.S. District Judge James P. O’Hara signed an order Tuesday agreeing that the motion to add the officers to the lawsuit was moot.

Attorneys for the city argued that Kansas law banned White’s family from pursuing the wrongful death count unless the city had first denied a wrongful death claim. No such claim has been filed against the city.

The officers shot White in the back as he ran away after a struggle at a Topeka park in September 2017. An investigation determined White had a gun in his pocket and the officers were cleared of criminal wrongdoing and of violating any police policies.

The family’s lawsuit alleging the city did not adequately train its officers is continuing.


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