Family of autistic man sues ex-cop over his death - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Family of autistic man sues ex-cop over his death

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A jury is weighing a lawsuit filed by the family of an autistic man who was shot and killed three years ago by a Los Angeles police officer.

Mohammad Usman Chaudhry died in March 2008 after a confrontation with Officer Joseph Cruz in Hollywood. Cruz had spotted Chaudhry under a balcony behind an apartment building and started
questioning him about what he was doing.

Cruz fatally shot Chaudhry after he said he suddenly pulled out a knife and lunged with it.

Cruz was later fired from the police force for lying about a different incident.

Chaudhry's family claims the officer planted the knife after the shooting. The case highlights a challenge law enforcement increasingly faces: How to approach people with developmental
disorders.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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