Quanice Hayes' family plans to sue city for fatal shooting
The family of a 17-year-old who was fatally shot by a Portland police officer plans to sue the the city, according to their attorneys.
Quanice Hayes died Feb. 9, 2017, after he was shot by Officer Andrew Hearst outside a Northeast Portland home.
The Hayes family's attorney said the family will hand-deliver a notice of intent to sue to the office of Mayor Ted Wheeler at City Hall on Thursday, Feb. 8. The notice marks the first formal step the family has taken toward filing a lawsuit against the city and police officers.
According to attorneys, the lawsuit will allege that Hearst acted unreasonably when he shot Hayes three times with an AR-15 rifle. When he was shot, Hayes was on his knees, complying with police commands and was unarmed, the lawsuit claims.
In late March 2017, a Multnomah County grand jury found that the officer was justified in the shooting. Police said Quanice was suspected of robbing a man using a realistic-looking replica gun. The man was sleeping in his car across from the Portland Value Inn — at 1707 N.E. 82nd Ave. — when the incident happened.
During their search, officers found Hayes and tried to talk to him before he ran. He was found again in the 8300 block of Northeast Hancock, which is when Hearst fired at Hayes.
A medical examiner later determined Hayes was not shot in the back. He was shot twice in the torso and once in the head.
Jesse Merrithew, an attorney representing the Hayes' estate, said, "The Hayes family refuses to allow Quanice's death to go unanswered. Despite the grand jury's decision not to bring criminal charges against Officer Hearst, the family is determined to do what it takes to get justice for Quanice. Quanice's death is part of pattern by the Portland Police Bureau of killing unarmed young black people"
Hayes was the second person killed by Hearst in the line of duty.
To fund the lawsuit, the Hayes family will launch a crowdfunding campaign at noon Feb. 8, the same time they plan to hand-deliver the notice to Wheeler's office.
KOIN 6 News is a news partner of the Portland Tribune.