The mother of a Bountiful man fatally shot by officers during a domestic disturbance in 2002 has filed suit against a Woods Cross police officer and a Davis County sheriff's deputy, alleging wrongful death and a cover-up.
In the suit filed Friday in U.S. District Court by Sharon Casias, without the apparent assistance of an attorney, Casias claims police unnecessarily shot her son, 31-year-old Russell Lynn Stewart, while responding to a 911 call on the evening of Jan. 18, 2002.
According to police accounts, both the deputy and officer responded to a domestic violence call at the Westminster Apartments, 450 W. 1500 South in Bountiful. While interviewing two women and Stewart, police reported Stewart ran from the apartment, leading the officer and deputy on a foot chase. After they confronted Stewart, police reported the man charged at one of them and the Woods Cross officer fired his weapon in self defense, striking Stewart, who later died at the University of Utah Hospital.
In the suit filed Friday, Casias alleges that the conditions that night were icy and that the officer slipped on the ice and accidentally fired his weapon. Afterward, the suit alleges, the officer, deputy and others involved in the investigation claimed to the public and media that the shot was fired in self defense.
Woods Cross City Administrator Gary Uresk said Friday his office was not aware of the suit and declined to comment until they had a chance to read and respond to it.