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Marvin Booker's family upset at delay in lawsuit against city, deputies they say caused his death


spencer booker press conference 250x243.jpg
Spencer Booker in 2011.
However, attorneys for the defendants say the force used on Booker was necessary. They say he was belligerent, spitting at officers and telling them, "Fuck you." He resisted gentler attempts to restrain him, they say, and showed surprising strength in doing so.

They also point out that Booker suffered from several medical conditions, including congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. His heart was twice the normal size and an autopsy showed he had cocaine in his system. Booker, the defendant's lawyers wrote, "possessed most, if not all, of the classic symptoms for somebody at risk of sudden cardiac death."

This past July, the defendants asked a federal court judge to dismiss the civil lawsuit altogether. Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey had already decided not to press criminal charges, finding that Booker's actions "necessitated the use of force."

In December, U.S. District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson declined to do so. "If what they say is even remotely true and your officers did to this man what they claim they did," he asked the city's lawyers in court, "then how is it even conceivable that a reasonable officer wouldn't understand that that was unconstitutional and wrong?"

But the city and the other defendants are appealing Jackson's ruling -- and, Booker's family says, delaying justice. Though the trial scheduled to start today will now be postponed, or canceled if the defendants win their appeal, Spencer Booker and his wife Gail decided to travel to Denver this week anyway. They spent Monday marching in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Marade, which began in City Park at the foot of the King statue. Wearing a long black overcoat to protect against the morning chill, Spencer Booker said his brother Marvin was a King scholar who memorized the civil rights leader's speeches and even recited one when the King memorial was erected in the park in 2002.

"The officers (involved in Booker's death) have declared that they have 'qualified immunity,'" Booker told a group of assembled journalists. "'Qualified immunity' means to me that if my brother had a gun and tried to shoot at them, they could take his life. If my brother had a bat and was trying to beat them, perhaps they would have had 'qualified immunity.'... But my brother only went to get his shoes."

Booker said the family wants the deputies to answer for what happened. "For me, justice would be for them to face the citizens of Colorado," he said, "and let them decide whether or not they were justified in what they did to my brother by murdering him."

The case is now in the hands of the United States Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Continue to read the lawsuit and the defendants' motion to dismiss it.


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7 comments
peteg1987
peteg1987

(Just keep in mind, not to believe your lying ears and eyes as news was brought to the 'common people.') I thought police were in place for society to preserve life and leaving justice to the courts. Failure to train has always been an issue when police screw up. Reported cowardly acts of shooting someone in the back, while fleeing, turns out to be a cop, no surprise. If this is proper training then everyone should know, any cowardly cop can shoot you, your kids, in the back--then use the 'coined phrase', "I believed my life was in danger". In other reported incidents it also seems that they are taught to empty an ammunition clip into a human before they stop. Knowing right from wrong, you know what's next, right? A District Attorney that covers up that information or alters the cowardly actions. I filed, in part, a suit for failure to train against Jefferson Cty. (pre-Columbine). Wanna see the crooked side, of those in law, that festers in the state of Colo.? (Respectfully, open your eyes, for your offspring, consider what you hear and do or say something, todays technology brings that into your home.) I have a website, petition, and a U-Tube video to share entitiled "Help me buy justice." Pass it on.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

The law only applies to those who can't afford it .......

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

DPD = violent homicidal thugs with badges and guns

A society DESERVES the corrupt criminal police force it tolerates.

hth.

John Tenorio
John Tenorio

Move forward that poor old man was beaten by cops... his family deserves justice!!!

CoreyDonahue
CoreyDonahue

Great bias journilism Wasteword!

The deputies that say caused his death? You posted the video. So let's assume you watched it. But hey you are a government propaganda rag, so don't repost the video, don't post the names of the deputies, just post a quote from the gov and the family to give that far and balanced propaganda that the government pas you for. Good job Wasteword! http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?client=mv-google&layout=mobile&v=vG7Mjt_j8Cs&oref=http%3A%2F%2Fm.youtube.com%2F&has_verified=1

Corey Donahue
Corey Donahue

Great bias journilism Wasteword! The deputies that say caused his death? You posted the video. So let's assume you watched it. But hey you are a government propaganda rag, so don't repost the video, don't post the names of the deputies, just post a quote from the gov and the family to give that far and balanced propaganda that the government pas you for. Good job Wasteword! http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?client=mv-google&layout=mobile&v=vG7Mjt_j8Cs&oref=http%3A%2F%2Fm.youtube.com%2F&has_verified=1

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