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Civil suit filed against Sarasota County Sheriff over fatal shooting

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Posted: Monday, June 9, 2014 10:09 am

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Attorneys for the family of Rodney Mitchell have filed a civil rights lawsuit against Sheriff Tom Knight and two deputies for the shooting death Mitchell in 2012.

The suit claims Sheriff Knight instituted unconstitutional office policies, and that deputies Troy Sasse and Adam Shaw conducted an illegal traffic stop and discharged their firearm recklessly.

According to a report issued when the shooting occurred, on June 11th, 2012, Deputy Adam Shaw pulled over a white Jeep SUV driven by Mitchell with another passenger inside. Sgt. Troy Sasse arrived on the scene as backup. Deputy Shaw allegedly told Mitchell to put the Jeep in park as Sgt. Sasse approached the vehicle. Shortly after, shots were fired.

23-year-old Mitchell suffered a fatal gunshot wound to the head and died instantly.  His SUV then crashed into another car at a Sunoco gas station.

ABC 7's Bobeth Yates will have a full report on this lawsuit tonight on ABC 7 News at 5.

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