Madera family files wrongful death lawsuit against city of Los Angeles

FRESNO, Calif.

Police say they were chasing Brian Beaird for reckless driving.

Beaird stopped after his silver Corvette crashed into another car. Beaird got out of the car and police opened fire.

Nathan Miller, an attorney with Miller and Ayala in Fresno, is representing Beaird's family. On Friday, he filed the wrongful death claim against the city on the family's behalf.

"The first things to go out of the vehicle were his hands, he moved around to the back of the car and the officer fired approximately 20 rounds at him," Miller said.

He says this is a very rare case where all the evidence is captured on tape, as the chase and shooting was broadcast live by several Los Angeles TV stations.

"He was shot within seconds of getting out of the vehicle," Miller said. "We do not believe there were any words exchanged."

Beaird's father, Bill, watched the whole scenario unfold on his television said.

"I just can't seem to get over this," Bearids father, Bill, said Friday at a news conference. "The TV guy said they tasered him, and I thought that's what it was but they killed him."

Beaird's cousin, Paul Aleman, said Beaird's father spoke with his son the night of the chase.

"He told his dad he didn't know why the police were behind him," Aleman said. "And he hadn't done anything wrong - his dad told him to pull over and he got scared and...he told his dad, he didn't want to get in trouble for talking on the phone and he hung up the phone."

The family's attorneys say Beaird was a retired, disabled veteran. They say he served as a sergeant in the National Guard during the 80s and he had been living in Oceanside for the past five years. They weren't sure where Beard was headed when police began chasing him.

"I know Brian," Aleman said. "I know how he thinks and I can see when he got out of the car was that he was scared."

His family's attorneys say Brian suffered from Paranoia, including Paranoia from Police, which was why he didn't pull over.

In a statement, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck said:

"After hearing the preliminary briefing, I am very concerned about the circumstances that led up to and resulted in this Officer Involved Shooting. Because of those concerns I have directed that the three officers be assigned home pending the final results of the investigation. Determinations regarding training or possible disciplining on the involved officers will be made at that time."

Attorneys say a toxicology test was taken. The results will be available in four to six weeks.

The city of Los Angeles has 45 days to respond the family's claim. Attorneys say if it's not resolved by then, they will fill a lawsuit.

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