Lawsuit Alleges Deputies Responsible for 2013 Death
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Jury selection is scheduled Monday in a civil lawsuit filed against Spokane County and two sheriff's deputies in connection with the death of a man in 2013.
The Spokesman-Review reports that the family of Will Berger is suing in federal court seeking to hold the deputies civilly responsible for excessive force resulting in Berger's death.
The 34-year-old man died of injuries during a confrontation outside a fitness club in 2013. Two deputies shocked Berger with a Taser and wrestled him to the ground in a choke hold after he became agitated at a gym and ran into traffic. The medical examiner's office said Berger died of oxygen deprivation to the brain. The office ruled his death a homicide.
Attorney Karen Unger, who represents Berger's family, declined comment last week.
The attorney representing Spokane County, Heather Yakely, wrote that the deputies were authorized to use deadly force to protect themselves and others.
Criminal and internal investigations cleared the deputies of wrongdoing.