Federal magistrate: $20M wrongful death lawsuit should be dismissed

U.S. District Court magistrate James Knepp has recommended that a federal judge dismiss a $20 million wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Bryan Jones, who Sandusky County deputies shot and killed last year.
Jessica Cuffman
Dec 9, 2011


U.S. District Court magistrate James Knepp has recommended that a federal judge dismiss a $20 million wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Bryan Jones, who Sandusky County deputies shot and killed last year.

Jones' parents are suing the county and certain sheriff's deputies for violating his civil rights by entering the family's home on July 11, 2010, and shooting Jones nine times, killing him and blowing off his arm with high-powered ammunition.

Jones parents had called police for help that night after Jones threatened his mother. Dennis Murray Sr., the family's attorney, has said sheriff's deputies had plenty of other options beyond storming the home.

In deciding that deputies were within their rights to kill Jones, Knepp looked at deputies' actions once they entered the home. He did not take into consideration the administrative and tactical decisions made leading up to the moment they entered the house.

Knepp's report is a recommendation. A federal judge will ultimately decide what happens to the case.

It could be presented to a jury, which would then decide on a monetary award for the family, or it could simply be dismissed.

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Also, read the magistrate's recommendation below, as well as the original complaint filed in the case and the follow-up filings by attorneys from both sides.


Marcus M

Look at the federal courts past record, very seldom does a magistrate recommend a dismissal at this point. I think this indicates how weak the initial litigation was, I would hope that any taxpayer monies spent to this point to defend this circus would be ordered to be paid by the family and or their attorney.....

yea right

cool so the police have a licence to kill..they can pepper spray anybody at anytime..even if a person is just walking down the sidewalk..they can push people so hard that it makes a veggie out of that person for the rest of their life..even though that person had NOTHING to do with who the cops were after..(just used for braking power from running to hard)...


i guess we are becomeing a police state..and the politicans and judges uphold this..


To yea right - I wasn't going to comment on this story but your comment made me want to say something anyway.  I'm glad that they've recommended dismissal on this case.  The parents called the police because they feared for their own lives and then after the police took over then they decided that they want to sue them.  The parents had trouble with this kid two nights in a row and had to have the police out there - the old saying fool me one shame on me fool you twice shame on me applice here.  They shouldn't have taken him back into their home after the first time and MAYBE he would still be alive.   I can't say that for sure but you can't blame the police for taking action when the parents called them to take care of a situation when again "they feared their own life because he had a gun and was threatening them".  The police were doing their job!  I don't know what you're talking about with the pepper spray stuff but quite frankly no one has every been made a "veggie" from being sprayed with pepper spray - even that 80 some year old woman during the black friday thing a few weeks ago (which was a security guard not a policeman.

yea right


i take it you dont watch the news..pepper spray ..protest..New York City..ring any bells.. the other is a kid was leaning up against the wall in a subway and a cop came along pushed him for NO reason..broke his neck and is now a veggie..cop was cleared of all wrong doing..caught on cctv..

suggestion surf the net and learn more..

i am not saying all cops are bad..just a few..


Excellent. It's about time these lawsuits without merit are nipped in the bud. Great decision Judge Knepp.


Moral of the story:

Don't be a violent drunk with a past history of random shootings, who threatens his own family with death, or you may end up 6' under

As Chris Rock said, if the police have to come and get you, they are gonna bring an @$$ whipping with them!


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Yeah, 20 mil is pretty steep and it is only a recommendation, and the judgement is based on officer testimony and involves no evidence and doesnt include administrative decisions or tactical protocol leading up to entry. 

Julie R.

Aren't you people jumping the gun here? It says that a magistrate RECOMMENDED that the lawsuit be dismissed ---- it doesn't say that it WAS.  


Don't you have a property matter, some Lorain attorneys, and a Huron bank to obsess about?


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At least there are three of us here who have the ability to exhibit reading comprehension as well as a show of common sense.

Julie R.

@ Pete: Stick with the story and stop trying to change the topic. (oh by the way, do you know anybody around that would be ignorant enough to buy property with serious defects in the title just to accommodate the corrupt Erie County courts and their idiot attorney buddies?) No need to reply.   


@ Julie:  Ignore the trolls, but don't be one yourself else - your comment didn't exactly have to do with the topic either.


...unless this was a clear case of suicide by cop.  Really does anyone know for sure? 


My question,  Why is SR covering this more than  the Fremont paper?   Free publicity for  Murray?


oohhh.. if we could all live in starry eyes world where they eat butterflies and poop rainbows


thats right........lets reward a lifetime of crime and wrongdoing with $20 million.......seems right doesnt it?