August 22, 2014
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The parents of a Northern California teen fatally shot by a sheriff's deputy have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit.
The parents of 13-year-old Andy Lopez alleged in their lawsuit filed in San Francisco federal court on Monday that Sonoma County Sheriff's deputy Erick Gelhaus wrongfully shot the teen on Oct. 22 in a modest Santa Rosa neighborhood. The lawsuit says that Gelhaus and the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department deprived Lopez of his civil rights and seeks unspecified damages.
Investigators have said the deputy opened fire after Lopez refused orders to drop a toy assault rifle he was carrying. The lawsuit and the parents' attorney called Gelhaus' actions "super reckless" and alleged that the teen was a victim of police abuse.
Attorneys for Gelhaus and the county didn't return phone calls Monday.
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