INDIANAPOLIS — A federal judge ruled parts of a lawsuit from the family of Dreasjon Reed can proceed.
Thursday’s ruling is related to a lawsuit filed by Reed’s mother in connection with the May 2020 shooting.
Reed was shot on May 6, 2020, after leading police on a chase that he livestreamed on Facebook. The incident started on I-65 near 30th Street, with IMPD pursuing Reed until he stopped his vehicle and got out near West 62nd Street and Michigan Road.
Officers pursued Reed; IMPD said Officer Dejoure Mercer deployed his Taser but it was ineffective. The department also said Reed exchanged gunfire with the officer; a gun was found with him at the scene.
Reed died from multiple gunshot wounds. His family disputes IMPD’s account of the events.
The high-profile case led to the appointment of a special prosecutor. A grand jury returned a “no bill,” meaning it didn’t find enough probable cause to charge Mercer with a crime.
After the grand jury’s decision was announced, Indiana State Police shared the evidence presented to the panel.
Reed’s family is pursuing a federal wrongful death lawsuit regarding the shooting seeking punitive and compensatory damages. While Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson said some parts of the lawsuit can proceed, others have been dismissed.
According to the judge’s ruling, the lawsuit can move forward with the following claims:
- A Fourth Amendment excessive force claim against Mercer related to the use of an Electronic Control Device (Taser)
- The federal inadequate medical care claim against Mercer
- Claim against the city of Indianapolis concerning an alleged policy of excessive force
- Claim against the city of Indianapolis concerning inadequate training
- The state law wrongful death and Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress (NIED) claims against Chief Randal Taylor and Deputy Chief Kendale Adams
The judge denied other parts of the lawsuit as moot:
- A Fourth Amendment excessive force claim against Mercer related to the shooting
- The state law battery claim against Mercer
- The state law battery claim against the city of Indianapolis
- The state law NIED claim against the city of Indianapolis
A June 20 trial date has been set, although the judge wrote in the ruling, “The parties are encouraged to work with the Magistrate Judge to reach a resolution of this case short of trial.”