A federal jury found police violated the rights of 30-year-old Leonard Thomas when a family argument escalated into a siege that ended when Thomas was shot by a sniper in front of his then-4-year-old son.
Lakewood statement on the U.S. District Court Jury Verdict
In response to today’s decision by a U.S. District Court jury on the case involving the city of Lakewood and three members of its police department, the city offers the following statement:
While we don’t agree with the verdict, we respect the jury and its decision.
This case boiled down to dissecting and second-guessing over the course of three weeks the actions our officers took during a four-hour standoff where a child’s life was in danger as he was held hostage, dangled out a second-story window and used as a human shield by his father.
Tragically the culmination of events resulted in the loss of life, which will have lasting effects on Leonard Thomas’ family and the police officers involved.
The Lakewood Police Department is always reviewing its practices and procedures for improvement, but is confident the officers involved in this incident acted appropriately given the circumstances they faced.
The city thanks its WCIA legal counsel for its work on the case.
This is the city’s official statement, no additional comment will be offered.