May 18th, 2010
11:18 AM ET

Family of Michigan girl killed in police raid files lawsuits

An attorney representing the family of a 7-year-old Detroit, Michigan, girl killed in a police raid filed lawsuits in state and federal courts Tuesday, accusing the police of a cover-up.

"This type of activity by a police force is unacceptable in America," said Michigan attorney Geoffrey Fieger at a news conference in his office. "What is equally unacceptable is the cover-up that has occurred."

Fieger said the lawsuits allege gross negligence, a violation of civil rights and a conspiracy to cover up the violation of civil rights.

Aiyana Jones died early Sunday after she was hit by gunfire during a police raid at her home.

Detroit Assistant Police Chief Ralph Godbee has said that police were executing a search warrant for a suspect in a shooting two days earlier that killed a high school student.

He said preliminary information indicated that members of the Detroit Police Special Response Team approached the house and announced themselves as police.

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Filed under: Justice
soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. Don

    This is obviously a tragedy that could have been avoided. The real travesty, however, is the rapidity of a lawyer's arrival and the filing of a lawsuit before this young girl's body is even in the ground. That is more of a statement of what America is alll about than any police raid gone bad. For shame.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Me

    As sad and disturbing as this is, I'd have a bit more sympathy if the family had waited a while to sue.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Oblivious

    Regardless of the other facts here, when a 7 year old girl is killed in an apt unit that does not match the apt unit they have a warrant for there is going to be a law suit. Setting a little girl on fire with a flashbang is a little unsettling in my opinion. Accident or not they will pay for it because they made a mistake by killing her. Self proving evidence there IMO. The show that was filming for the reality tv show was called the first 48 hours. The show is about how the first 48 hours is so crucial to an investigation before evidence is lost, disposed of etc etc. Well I would say it can work the same way for a POSSIBLE police cover up. That is just the other side of the coin here for those that are pointing at the family filing so fast. It is a lot harder for police to cover up the situation when there is a spot light on it. Anyway this is just my opinion and like all others here its worth less than a penny since we don't know all the facts. Unless we are on the jury we won't have any say in the matter anyway and my guess is that it will be settled out of court since the police would rather get past this than drag the little girls name through the mud to spite the family.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Guy

    Who said I was white? Usually a raid is a tactical manuver with guns drawn. For all they know, high school boy killer is standing on the other side with a shotgun. No bleeding hearts for the cops that get dropped going into someone elses house. But when you are getting robbed who are you going to call? Maybe there needs to be a review of the situation that ensued, but that's where I draw the line. Nobody points and shoots a seven year old on purpose.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jessica


    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bobby

      I am sure you'll be first in line to be hanged

      May 18, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Spot On

    Patrickc3000 – Dead-on balls accurate.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Steve

    Too bad the kid died. If the cops acted improperly, sue them, whatever. I understand a suspect in the shooting and killing of a teen was hiding in the house (armed and dangerous), and the mother got into a scuffle with the cops. Clearly she was protecting the killer. Unfortunate death of the child, but the family is at last partly, if not wholly to blame.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Dan

    Hey people!, it was reported (here in Michigan) that an older woman attacked and was in a struggle with an officer and during the scuffle the gun discarged. The cops did not go in looking to shoot a kid...... GET REAL!

    May 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • DaveinSC

      we must first play the "race card" then we can look at the facts and find the truth

      May 18, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  9. DaveinSC

    This is a sad thing and my prayers go out to the family. What people need to realize it that this was executed properly, and the reports say that the officer who fired his weapon was contacted by someone in the residence. that means there was physical contact, like maybe someone grabed the officer and caused the weapon to fire. we do not know, and it is not for us to hand down judgement without knowing the facts. I'm sure that the "race card" will be played in this as it always is when a person other than caucasian gets shot by police. Wait for the facts and do not let the emotions of what happened cloud the facts. thanks to emotions, look at the president we have now. he sure has not helped us

    May 18, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Carol

    The family has not even laid their child to rest yet and they have already filed a lawsuit? It couldn't wait a few days longer??? I can see hiring an attorney immediately to help guide them through the legal processes that are definitely coming....but to have an announcement that a lawsuit has been filed within two days of their child's death instead of announcing that the family are making plans for a memorial leaves you thinking where is their heart truly at?

    May 18, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Heather

    Leave the "facts" aside. This story is about the family filing a lawsuit (trying to make money) because their 7 year old child was killed less than three days ago. That's it. That is what this story is about. This is a true fact. That in itself is possibly the most disturbing aspect of this entire situation.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Rgf

    I think its time that Detroit face the truth. The only way they are going to get their police department back on track is by developing RoboCop.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  13. PA-Pilot

    It is time to stop the militarization of the police. If you want to play military, go join the military. If you got picked on in high school and want to get back at all the people who bullied you, becoming a cop is not the right way to do it. These criminal thugs are murderers and deserve the death penalty for recklessly murdering that little girl.

    May 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      Yeah! Let's approach a 17 year old MURDERER with OPEN ARMS and white bunnies and unicorns!

      May 18, 2010 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  14. kingz

    KMF agree 100% looks like the family doesnt care about the child they're looking to get PAID! Sad that America has come to this where everyone tries anything just to get PAID!

    May 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Tami

    Dave...I've witnessed police conducting a raid on a White family....shooting first...Killing both dogs...& they had the wrong d%mn house. This is the same case with this family...the wrong house except this time it wasn't was a human being. Be glad that YOUR experiences with the police is positive...and not assume that the POLICE are innocent. Why are you giving them the benefit of the doubt when they are human with human errors...simply put. God some of you don't use your common sense... always judging situation based on your life...PLEASE

    May 18, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      So are the reports of the officer being attacked even though they announced they were police AND them arresting the correct person inside this home incorrect?

      May 18, 2010 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • CD

      Tami – Isn't that what you're doing......making YOUR judgement based on YOUR life??

      May 18, 2010 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tami

      Paul, yes the police being attacked first has turned out to be false...CD, I don't recall anything I've said as being my life experience but my experiences with the Police has been ok... but just because my experience(s) leave nothing to complain... doesn't mean it's the same for all ... this was my point to I guess we agree

      May 18, 2010 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
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