Mother Devastated as Cop Shoots Her Mentally Ill Child to Death for “Hiding in Closet”
LAS VEGAS (CN) — Las Vegas Metro police had no reason to shoot a man to death as he hid in a closet in his mother’s house and raised his hands as he was ordered, his family claims in court.
A police video records officers shooting Abel Correa to death about one second after an officer says, “Get your hands up.”
His mother Maria Correa and her three surviving sons say police knew Abel suffered from mental health issues, had “never used violence toward police or another individual,” and had been placed on a mental health hold. They sued Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo, and Metro police Officers Glenn Taylor and Eli Prunchak, on Aug. 4 in Federal Court.
Taylor and Prunchak shot 24-year-old Abel five times on the morning of Aug. 7, 2015, after a neighbor called the police to report that he had thrown a trailer ball-hitch through his front window.
A brother gave Taylor and Prunchak permission to search their home for Abel, who was hiding in a closet in the living room. His mother says Abel presented no threat to the officers, was not armed with a knife or gun, and had no means of escape from the closet where he was hiding.
Nonetheless, when “Prunchak ordered Abel to raise his arms, and when Abel Correa complies, defendants discharged their weapons at least five time, killing Abel Correa,” his mother says in the complaint.
Days after the shooting, Undersheriff Kevin McMahill said Abel Correa was armed with a wrench and a screwdriver and lunged at the officers. It was the seventh time Metro Police officers killed a person that year, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The family seeks punitive damages for wrongful death, excessive force, negligence, and violations of civil rights through customs, policies, procedures and training.
They are represented by Melvin Grimes, who was not immediately available by telephone Tuesday.
Metro Police do not comment on pending litigation.
Published by Courthouse News Service.
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