Mixed verdict reached in Steven Vargas wrongful death case
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A federal jury says a Fresno Police officer used excessive force in shooting, an unarmed man. Police thought Steven Vargas had a weapon. He was killed two years ago.
The jury found Sergeant Mike Palomino and the city of Fresno are responsible for Vargas' death. But jurors did not find Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer liable. The attorney for the Vargas family says the ruling is a victory.
The attorney for the Vargas family, Arturo Gonzalez said, "Our clients are very pleased that today a federal jury in Fresno found unanimously that Steven Vargas should not have been shot."
Chief Jerry Dyer said, "The fact all 8 jurors found in my favor obviously pleases me and the fact I am no longer a defendant in this case."
The next step will be to decide how much the city of Fresno will have to pay the Vargas family.
Family attorney, Arturo Gonzalez, has put a seven figure offer on the table. He says if a settlement can't be negotiated, the jury will come back next month to decide the damages.
Gonzalez also said another trial in this case is possible.
Watch the video for complete coverage from Action News reporter Gene Haagenson.
fresno county, officer involved shooting, fresno, fresno police department, jerry dyer, court, lawsuit, local, gene haagenson
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