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Appeals panel revives lawsuit over 2016 police shooting

July 3, 2019

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A federal appeals court has revived a lawsuit against an Arkansas police department that alleged an officer wrongly shot and killed a suicidal teenager who was lowering a gun from his head.

The 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel Wednesday reversed a lower-court decision to dismiss the lawsuit over the Benton police shooting of 17-year-old Keagan Schweikle in October 2016. The lawsuit was filed by Schweikle’s parents.

Schweike’s parents called police after he went into the woods with a gun threatening to shoot himself. An officer told Schweike to drop his gun after he raised it to his temple, then shot Schweikle as he moved the gun away from his head.

A federal judge last year found the officer’s use of force wasn’t constitutionally excessive.

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