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January 27, 2015

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Attorney for family in police shooting calls inquest process ‘a farce’

Erik Scott's Attorney

Erik Scott's Attorney, Seg. 2

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  • Erik Scott's Attorney, Seg. 2
  • Erik Scott's Attorney, Seg. 3
  • Erik Scott's Attorney, Seg. 4
  • Erik Scott's Attorney, Seg. 1

Attorney Ross Goodman’s request for the family of Erik Scott, killed by Metro Police in July, to have access to evidence prior to a coroner’s inquest on Wednesday has been denied by a Clark County judge.

Joe Tommasino, staff attorney for Clark County courts, wrote on behalf of Judge Tony Abbatangelo that county code does not “contain any language that would enable inspection of evidence before the time of the inquest.”

In his original motion, Goodman argued that the code gives Abbatangelo the general authority to “insure a fair and just hearing” as the presiding officer over the inquest.

In response, Tommasino wrote that the judge “is only empowered to ‘conduct the inquest as he deems necessary to insure a just and fair hearing.’”

Goodman, appearing Thursday night on “Face to Face With Jon Ralston,” said it is unfair that the Scott family cannot view the evidence before the inquest. While there is nothing that “confers any broad public right of access to such records, exhibits, or other evidence,” there is also nothing that prevents the judge from allowing the family to examine it, Goodman said.

“It just goes to show you what a farce this process is,” Goodman said. “It’s only designed to clear police officers in the arena of public opinion.”

Scott was killed by police July 10 outside the Costco store in Summerlin after authorities say he pointed a gun at an officer. Some witness accounts have contradicted Metro’s version of events.

Goodman also accused Metro of attempting to distract the public by leaking information about Scott’s divorce. The real issue, Goodman said, is the whereabouts of the Costco security video.

The video, Goodman said, has been in Metro’s possession for the past two months.

“If you want to have a fair and just hearing, then what is the prejudice by having the victim’s family take a look at that evidence to inspect it for themselves?” he asked.

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  1. Just as I said 7 days ago:

    By logic_should_rule
    Sept. 9, 2010
    9:14 a.m.
    Easy prediction: Request denied!

  2. This is just a coroner's inquest, NOT a court proceeding. Evidence does not have to be presented other then to those sitting in on hte inquest. If this was a court proceeding, then yes, all parties should be able to view the evidence. But it's not.

    Too many here are "arm chair quarterbacking" on obviously something they know nothing about, what happened that day at Costco. IF the police were wrong, then the family can file suit against Metro; if the inquest shows Metro was just doing their jobs and Mr. Scott was in the wrong, then case closed. THEN perhaps the family, if they STILL feel that Metro was wrong, can still file a wrongful death suit.

  3. <<My husband and son still "carry" even in Costco as is their right as law enforcement and with a CCW - they already know that really isn't enough to PROTECT THEM from the over-reactive Summerlin grannies or inexperienced employees. Funny thing is, the public has NO CLUE as to how many people "carry" in public-so for all the faint of heart, scaredy cat pains in the ass-STAY HOME and watch your reality shows. THIS is real life here in Vegas, it's ugly and the wild, wild west show also know as Metro is out and among us. But you can easily identify them, they're the ones with the cellphone glued to their ear, look and at about 16 and their fingers on the trigger!>>


    Your post is a hoot!!! Hope you husband and son KNOW when to oben a police officer's commands.

    PS Over reactive Summerline grannies and inexperienced employees. LOLOLOLOL I thank the Good Lord I don't work at Costco because if I didn't know where the donut holes were, your husband or son would pull their permitted weapons on me!!!!

  4. "I hate to say it but if these thugs with badges don't get put in their place, the citizens of this town may just take care of the problem like Sharon Angle says to using "Second Amendment" remedies."

    TonyCrago -- I gotta side with you on this one. Angle has taken a lot of heat on this point, but the history of the Second Amendment includes some precedent this is one of the reasons it exists. Perhaps she's recalling the times when We the People took their citizenship seriously and actively, and directly, defended their liberties. Since then, of course, We the People became more like We the Herd and depend on government to give us our rights.

    "Fear is the foundation of most governments." - John Adams, 1776 "Thoughts on Government"

  5. RIP Erik Scott

  6. We need "cop cameras" like they have in San Jose CA