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Sumner County Source
Officer-Involved Shooting Lawsuit in Hendersville Dismissed
By Source Staff,
Recently the City of Hendersonville was sued in federal court by an individual who was shot by a Hendersonville police officer in 2020. A judge recently dismissed the suit.
Details of the incident are below.
– On May 21, 2020, at approximately 1:00 a.m., a Hendersonville resident began assaulting his wife at their house. Drunk, he pulled her from the house, threw her against a brick wall, kicked her while she was on the ground, and began choking her from behind. Using her mobile phone, the victim called 911. She got loose, ran, and hid in the bed of a truck parked nearby.
– Dispatchers notified Hendersonville police officers of a woman who was being physically assaulted by an intoxicated male.
– When two Hendersonville police officers arrived, they met the individual near his garage.
– After officers asked him to move off the landing either into the house or into the garage, the individual refused. Officers asked him to remove his hands from his pockets. He refused.
– Officers attempted to pull his hands from his pockets and place hand cuffs on him. They struggled, and all three fell to the ground and fought for 6.5 minutes.
– Officers later found out that the individual had served in the U.S. military and had trained for hand-to-hand combat.
– During the fight, the officers tased the individual multiple times with no effect. The individual exclaimed, “Taser won’t work.” During the fight one officer received injuries to both hands. The other officer received a cut to one hand.
– As the fight continued, the individual grabbed one officer’s taser and then attempted to grab an officer’s gun
– An officer fired one shot, hitting the individual, but the individual did not stop fighting. Officers then tased the individual again and were able to fully place hand cuffs on him.
– Officers arriving soon after the shot had been fired provided aid, saving the individual’s life.
– As the individual was receiving aid, he asked to be left to die.
– The shooting officer said that the officers “would have been done” had the shot not been fired by the officer.
– A witness statement identified the individual as the aggressor.
– Police later found out about three previous calls for domestic violence involving the individual between September and November 2019. At the time of the fight with officers, the individual had a blood-alcohol level of .206 and evidence of amphetamine in his body.
– Officers later found out that two children were inside the house during the domestic assault and the struggle with police.
– During its investigation, TBI interviewed the individual, who corroborated the officers’ recount of the incident.
– Based on that investigation, the district attorney determined that the shooting was justified.
– The individual was convicted of multiple offenses and sentenced.
– In July 2020, while in court, the individual recalled the night of the incident and said that he was highly intoxicated and wanted to die that night and that he was trying to get the officers to kill him. He acknowledged that the officers saved his life.
Mayor Jamie Clary made these statements:
“This is a sad situation from many perspectives. The individual served our country and deserves our appreciation. We hope that he receives the help he needs and finds healing soon. Our officers saved this man’s life. They saved their own lives. Possibly they saved the lives of the woman, two children, and a witness. I cannot express enough the appreciation I have for what they did when they were faced with threats to several lives. Unfortunately, the individual chose to sue us. The City defended itself and had the suit dismissed. This extremely distressing incident was managed by our officers who responded as well as any person could have. I am very proud that our officers continue to keep the people of Hendersonville safe despite dangers that confront our officers.”