Court orders deputies to pay more than $2M to victim's family - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Court orders deputies to pay more than $2M to victim's family

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

It's rare that a dispute with authorities leads to gunfire, but that's what happened one night outside a Cannon County home.

When it was all over, Richard Butcher was dead and his family desperately wanted justice. Now, two lawmen are being held responsible.

After testimony from family and several witnesses, the court found in favor of the family and ordered those deputies to pay more than $2 million.

Still, the victim's brother says no dollar amount can bring his best friend back.

"We just feel like we finally got some justification for what happened. We really hope that no one else has to go through what we went through," Nicholas Butcher said.

Butcher says his brother, 28-year-old Richard Butcher, was doing donuts in the yard last February when two Cannon County deputies showed up and started shooting.

"It's been very different without my brother. Me and him were roommates; we spent a lot of time together," Nicholas Butcher said.

But instead of spending time with his brother, he has been at attorney Luke Evans' office.

"I was purely shocked that officers entrusted with protecting and upholding the Constitution would have or did go out and shoot a man in his own backyard," Evans said.

Over the months, Evans and his team built a case against Sheriff's Deputies Reed Bryson and Jordan McGee. Their argument to the jury was that the two deputies violated Richard Butcher's Fourth Amendment rights.

"Rickey Butcher was on his own property doing something he had every legal right to do. These officers entered that property and shot him in the back," Evans said.

And the court seemed to agree. The deputies have been ordered to pay Butcher's family $2.25 million.

But Nicholas Butcher says the court case and his brother's death could have all been avoided.

"I hope that they won't act on impulse; maybe they'll think about what's going on and try to get some facts," he said.

Channel 4 reached out to the Cannon County Sheriff's Department but did not hear back on Tuesday.

When it comes to criminal charges, Butcher's attorney says a federal criminal investigation is still ongoing.

Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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