Graves Family Considers Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Matthew Graves died after getting shot in an Eagle Point Carl's Jr. bathroom. His only infraction before the shooting was walking in the middle of the street.

Posted: Nov. 1, 2018 10:50 PM
Updated: Nov. 2, 2018 10:30 AM

EAGLE POINT, Ore. — The Graves family has seen the body cam video footage of the shooting of their son and say they want justice. The Jackson County District Attorney's office released the footage last week. The family sat down and watched the video with their lawyer, showing the exact moment their son, Matthew, was shot twice. 

Five out of the seven grand jury members deciding the criminal case say that the police officers acted lawfully. But a civil case will have a different burden of proof, and family lawyers say it's worth pursuing. 

Kelly Andersen is on the Graves' legal team. He says, "Officers are here to protect and defend us, and that’s what officers usually do, but when an officer fails to do that, then there should be consequences and accountability."

The civil lawsuit would be filed against the Eagle Point Police Department. 

Andersen says, "There was no crime committed in this case, there was a traffic infraction, that is not a capital offense."

Over the next 60 days, the family's attorneys will conduct their own investigation. That includes interviewing witnesses and combing through the body cam footage and its transcripion.  

Andersen says, "There’s a lot of information that we’re still gathering and then the family will make a final decision on what they want to do after we had finished gathering all the information and have thoroughly analyzed it."

The family must decide whether to file the civil case by September 2020. 

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