A Lubbock Police Officer denies allegations that he used excessive force against a 90 year old man. Curtis Fish responded in federal court records last week to a lawsuit filed in mid-November by Willie Williams.
At about 2:30 AM on the morning of September 25th, police responded to a burglary call next door to William's apartment when shots rang out. Williams claims that police fired at him and he fired back. His family speculated at the time that Williams might have mistook officers for burglars.
Prosecutors dropped charges against Williams and he recovered from a bullet wound to the throat.
Williams claimed that officers fired at him and he returned fire. But now, Fish claims that Williams fired first and he simply defended himself.
"Officer Fish acted as a reasonable peace officer in good faith," court records say. Fish also claims, "he was required to make split-second decisions along with other officers of the City of Lubbock Police Department ... in defense of others and himself."
Fish also requested that the lawsuit be thrown out because police officers have "qualified immunity" from being sued.
However, on Monday U.S. District Judge Sam Cummings ruled that the "pleadings assert facts which, if true, would overcome the defense of qualified immunity."
The order does not prevent Fish from reasserting immunity again. Trial is set for May 6, 2013, which is more than 16 months away.
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