Lawrence Parrish was in his home on April 7, 2017 when, according to the lawsuit, more than 10 police cars were congregated near his home in East Austin around 10 p.m.
When Parrish opened the door of his home at around 10:11 p.m., Austin police officers shot him several times and critically wounded him. Now, Parrish is filing a lawsuit.
On the night of the shooting, Parrish was taken to University Medical Center Brackenridge. According to the lawsuit, the officers falsely claimed that Parrish fired at them, but it was later determined he never raised a weapon toward the officers.
The officers in question have been identified as Dane O'Neill, Paul Bianchi, Jordan Wagstaff and Marcos Johnson. The lawsuit was filed April 4 in the United States District Court.
KVUE reported in 2017 that the officers were placed on administrative leave, which is protocol after an officer-involved shooting.
The four officers who fired their weapons claimed Parrish was holding a rifle when he opened the door, however, this was determined not to be true, according to the lawsuit.
Court documents suggest that the lack of video evidence of the shooting "was not an accident. It was a coordinated, intentional plan to diminish the potential review and oversight of the officers’ actions with objective evidence."
The lawsuit said Parrish was charged with aggravated assault against a public servant and held on $500,000 bail from April 2017 until July 2018.
Four officers allegedly tried to get Parrish out of his home to talk, but he wouldn't comply – stepping in and out of the house sporadically, at one point with a rifle, later identified as a .40 caliber Hi-Point. Eventually, cops issued a SWAT callout, but Parrish stepped outside before the SWAT team showed up, again brandishing his rifle. Interim Police Chief Brian Manley said during an on-scene presser that Parrish then fired his rifle toward the officers, who immediately returned fire for a duration between one and two seconds, hitting Parrish.
A few days later, however, Manley took to a lectern at APD Headquarters to say that initial investigations revealed Parrish never fired at the four officers. "Perception in those seconds when everything's unfolding and you're in a critical incident, sometimes perceptions are not always 100% accurate," said Manley. He reiterated that aggravated assault charges remain for Parrish, because his rifle was used in a threatening manner against the officers. [MORE]
The arrest affidavit, filed the day after the shooting, states the officer closest to Parrish claimed he saw Parrish “raise his rifle towards his direction.” The officer states he fired two rounds at Parrish then heard more gunshots when he ducked down to take cover, but wasn’t sure where the shots came from. [MORE]
Parrish was struck by several more bullets.
In July of 2018, those charges were dropped, according to the lawsuit.