A former US police officer who shot and killed an Australian woman wants to delay her family's civil rights trial for $ 70 million (US $ 50 million).
The city of Minneapolis and Mohamed Noor, the officer who shot and killed Justine Ruszczyk Damond, asked a federal judge to suspend the civil rights lawsuit while a criminal case is pending.
Noor's lawyers said the civil case should be delayed in the interests of justice & # 39; and they argued that Noor could not defend himself with justice in both trials.
The 40-year-old life coach called 911 to report a possible sexual assault in an alley behind her house (Justine appears in the photo with her partner, Don)
The city of Minneapolis and Mohamed Noor (pictured) have asked a federal judge to suspend the civil rights lawsuit while the criminal case is pending
Damond's family disagrees and said they deserve answers and that cases should continue.
In July, Damond's father sued Noor, his partner, the city and the current and former police chief, alleging that his daughter's rights were violated.
He also accused the officers of conspiring to hide facts surrounding the shooting, and of making a conscious decision not to activate the body cameras.
Noor's lawyers say that criminal and civil cases are intertwined, and that Noor can not invoke his constitutional rights in his criminal trial while defending civil claims.
In July, Damond's father sued Noor, his partner, the city and the current and former police chief, alleging that his daughter's rights had been violated.
"If this case is not suspended, Noor will be forced to claim his Fifth Amendment privilege and risk using this decision against him in this case, or vigorously defend this case and risk the prosecution using the defense of the case. Noor to pursue the criminal case. " & # 39; lawyer Matt Forsgren wrote.
Noor is charged with murder and murder on July 15, 2017 after he shot and killed Damond.
The 40-year-old life coach called 911 to report a possible sexual assault in an alley behind her house.
Noor has not spoken to the investigators, invoking his constitutional right against self-incrimination.
Noor is charged with homicide and murder on July 15, 2017 after he shot and killed Justine Ruszczyk Damond
Since then he has been fired and a trial date has not been established.
He has not formally filed a guilty plea, but his criminal defense attorney indicated in April that Noor intends to plead not guilty.
"In any case, given the nature of the accusations in the civil and criminal actions, Noor is unable to defend effectively in both actions at the same time," he added.
Lawyers for the other defendants echoed that, saying that they can not obtain evidence to defend themselves against civil suits, while Noor invokes the fifth amendment.
The Hennepin County Prosecutor's Office, which is not part of civil proceedings, also asked the judge to pause the civil case while the criminal case is pending.
Mohamed Noor (pictured) has not spoken to investigators, invoking his constitutional right against self-incrimination
Prosecutor Beth Stack argued that there is great interest in avoiding harm to a group of jurors, and noted that the evidence in the criminal case is under a protection order to prohibit widespread dissemination.
Once the state criminal trial has been conducted, all evidence will be public and this civil litigation can continue without endangering the important interests of criminal justice at stake, "he wrote.
Robert Bennett, a lawyer for Ruszczyk, argued against delaying the civil process.
He said in documents filed with the court that he would be willing to accept an order of protection or other controls to ensure that the claims of Noor's fifth amendment have no effect on the prosecution or criminal defense.
The shooting of Damond, an Australian double in the USA. UU citizen who had been living in Minnesota for more than two years.
The 40-year-old life coach called 911 to report a possible sexual assault in an alley behind her house
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