Louisville man sues jail, city, officers over 2015 shooting
Robert Johnson claims he was riding in vehicle when Metro Corrections Officer John Hagan shot him and the driver
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A Louisville man has filed a lawsuit against the city and Metro Corrections employees, claiming an officer with the jail shot him last year.
Officer John Hagan shot a suspect he was trying to apprehend as well as Robert Johnson near the Kroger on Brownsboro Road on April 2, 2015, according to the lawsuit.
Michael Anthony Thornton was allegedly wanted on multiple warrants, including escape from the home incarceration program.
Police have said Hagan shot Thornton after he turned his vehicle "in an aggressive manner" toward the corrections officer, who was on foot.
Johnson was in the vehicle with Thornton when he was shot through his left leg, the bullet lodging in his right leg, according to the lawsuit.
Both men were taken to University Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
In the lawsuit, filed Thursday in Jefferson Circuit Court, Johnson claims that Hagan and others acted negligently and with a “reckless disregard for the safety of others.”
The jail, Metro Government, Hagan and "unknown" city employees are named as defendants in the lawsuit.
Metro Corrections Director Mark Bolton said in a statement that the lawsuit is "without merit" and Hagan's "life was in danger" when he fired shots at a suspect.
"Ofc. Hagan's life was threatened," Bolton said. "He was forced to make his decision in a split second. His decision was right. He had my support at the time this event occurred. He has my support now. And I look forward to standing with him through this lawsuit."
Bolton said the Jefferson Commonwealth's Attorney's Office and Metro Corrections investigated the shooting and found Hagan actions were justified.
Jessie Halladay, a spokeswoman for the Jefferson County Attorney's Office, which represents the city in lawsuits, said she could not discuss pending litigation.
The lawsuit is seeking unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.
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