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Wrongful death lawsuit argues Phoenix systemically fails to supervise its police department

Published: Thursday, February 23, 2023 - 4:29pm
Updated: Thursday, February 23, 2023 - 5:09pm
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A new lawsuit argues that the city of Phoenix has systematically failed to train, supervise and manage its police department, which remains under federal investigation.

The wrongful death case was filed by the family of a former Somali refugee with a mental health issue, who was fatally shot by Phoenix officers last September.

Phoenix police said Ali Osman threw rocks at patrol vehicles and did not obey orders to stop.

A new lawsuit by his family says the officers who first saw Osman near an intersection radioed for less-lethal ammunition, such as a bean bag. While they waited, a third officer drove up. The lawsuit says he was unaware of the request when he led the first-arriving officers back, unnecessarily confronted Osman on foot, and was the first to shoot.

The city declined comment due to an open criminal investigation.

The Phoenix Police Department says the officers who shot at Osman now have non-enforcement jobs.

Law Enforcement