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Mother sues Las Vegas police over death of teen son

April 8, 2019
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In this Friday, April 5, 2019, photo Taccara Brooks, center, is surrounded by family members during a news conference outside the Brent Bryson law office in Las Vegas. Brooks, the mother of 16-year-old Anthony Garrett who died of a gunshot to the head after police chased him into her house, filed a federal civil rights and wrongful death lawsuit against Las Vegas police. (Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun via AP)
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In this Friday, April 5, 2019, photo Taccara Brooks, center, is surrounded by family members during a news conference outside the Brent Bryson law office in Las Vegas. Brooks, the mother of 16-year-old Anthony Garrett who died of a gunshot to the head after police chased him into her house, filed a federal civil rights and wrongful death lawsuit against Las Vegas police. (Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun via AP)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The mother of a teenager who authorities say shot himself after locking himself in his room while police were at his house in a burglary investigation has filed a civil rights and wrongful death lawsuit against Las Vegas police.

Taccara Brooks alleges the 2017 death of her son, 16-year-old Anthony Garrett, resulted from unreasonable and excessive force by officers who left him bleeding in the locked room for several hours and then let a police dog bite him before he was hospitalized.

“They did not allow treatment for approximately seven hours (and) they allowed the K-9 dog to bite and drag Anthony after he was incapacitated,” Brent Bryson, an attorney for Brooks, said Monday. “He was alive when he got to the hospital.”

Officer Larry Hadfield, a department spokesman, declined to comment on the lawsuit.

The Clark County coroner ruled Garrett’s death a suicide. Police said he shot himself with officers at the door of the upstairs room.

The lawsuit, also alleging negligence, was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas. It seeks more than $7 million in damages.

It says Brooks allowed detectives into the house to search her son’s room after they told her they believed he had been involved in several burglaries.

Police said at the time that they found evidence from previous burglaries inside the house, and that Garrett was found hiding in the backyard before he locked himself in his room.

The lawsuit accuses police of ushering Brooks and other family members out of her home and waiting several hours before a SWAT team entered the room and a police dog bit Garrett. The teenager died at a hospital two days later.

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