Plaintiff Rests in Escobedo Trial

By Megan Trent
By Scott Sarvay

February 11, 2011 Updated Feb 11, 2011 at 5:56 PM EST

UPDATE: FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - The estate of 28-year-old Rudy Escobedo called its final witness to the stand Friday in the federal civil trial stemming from a fatal police-action shooting in July 2005.

Escobedo's sister, Raquel Hanic, told jurors that her brother, “Wasn't a saint, but wasn't a monster either."

She told jurors that her brother struggled with addiction, but was reaching out for help. She also testified she doesn't believe he ever pointed a gun at police.

Hanic said she respects the members of the Fort Wayne Police Department, but wants to see justice prevail for her brother.

Officers have testified that Escobedo was high on cocaine and had a gun. They say their actions were motivated by concern for public and officer safety.

All eight officers were once again in court Friday, and several other members of the FWPD sat in the courtroom during trial proceedings.

Defense attorneys will begin calling witnesses at 11:00 a.m. Monday.

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) - Testimony resumed Thursday morning in the federal civil trial stemming from a fatal police-action shooting in July 2005.

Thursday morning a fort police officer took the stand to testify about what occurred when they were called to the apartment of 28-year-old Rudy Escobedo.

The officer says Escobedo was ordered out of the apartment but when that command was ignored, they threw a tear gas canister into the apartment. Then the action was repeated after their commands for him to leave the room was ignored the second time.

After throwing a flash bang grenade into the apartment police gained access. They later located Escobedo in a bed room, the officer said. They also knew he had a gun.

Among the witnesses called to testify on Wednesday was Escobedo's sister.

Escobedo's family stands by their assertion that Escobedo didn't have to die and the use of tear gas and flash-bang grenades to enter his apartment was excessive. The family believes he was just in-need of help.

In 2008 a judge dismissed claims of wrongful death against the city of Fort Wayne and some of the officers accused in the case.




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