PHOENIX, Arizona (CBS11) – A jury found an Arizona Police officer not guilty of murder in the shooting death of Daniel Shaver, 26, of Granbury in 2016.
Philip Brailsford was on trial for Shaver’s shooting death.
Shaver was in Mesa, Arizona for business when police showed up outside his hotel room.
Brailsford said he shot Shaver, who had been ordered to crawl toward officers, when Shaver reportedly reached toward the waistband of his shorts.
The officer said he believed Shaver was reaching for a gun.
Shaver’s widow filed a lawsuit in January seeking $75 million in damages, alleging that the killing was unprovoked and could have been avoided had officers done more investigation.
Laney Sweet said in her lawsuit filed Tuesday that reckless tactics used by officers when responding to a report of someone pointing a rifle out of a hotel window had contributed to her husband’s death.
David E. Wood, an attorney representing Sweet, wrote in the lawsuit that Shaver made no moves that justified lethal force. “There was no reason for anyone to fire,” Wood wrote. “Daniel did nothing to warrant being shot.”
This is the second lawsuit filed this month over Shaver’s death. Shaver’s parents alleged in a wrongful-death lawsuit that Brailsford had no reason to shoot their son.
Sweet filed her lawsuit against the City of Mesa, the team of officers who responded to the hotel call, and La Quinta Holdings, the parent company of the hotel in question.
Sweet alleges the leader of the team of officers gave confusing commands to Shaver while he was on the ground, encouraged overly aggressive reactions from his subordinates and handled the call as if there was an imminent threat of an active shooter.
The lawsuit said the hotel staff members who knew Shaver could have told officers that he wasn’t a threatening person and therefore could have lowered officers’ expectations about the risks at the hotel. Sweet also alleged that officers should have gathered more information about the call before approaching Shaver.