Mom of man killed by CMPD stun gun says verdict 'long time coming'

Family wins lawsuit against CMPD officer who used Taser
Published: Aug. 29, 2014 at 11:43 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 28, 2014 at 3:57 AM EDT
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(Source: WBTV video)
(Source: WBTV video)

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - For Temako McCarthy, the trip to her son's grave site Thursday afternoon took on more significance.

"I know his presence was in the courtroom so I just wanted to come out, put the flowers down, and let him know he can rest - it's over."

A federal jury in a civil trial found that Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Officer Michael Forbes used excessive force when he fired two shots from a stun gun at La-Reko Williams.

It happened in July 2011. Officers responded to a call for a domestic disturbance involving Williams outside the Woodlawn light rail stop.

Officer Forbes said Williams tried to leave the scene, and that Williams pushed him. Even though Williams was down after the first hit from the stun gun, the officer used it again.

Attorneys representing Williams' parents said that second shock from the stun gun was unnecessary and deadly.

Thursday afternoon a jury ruled in the family's favor and awarded $500,000 in damages.

The City of Charlotte will pay the judgment.

"We finally get to the truth. That's my biggest thing - them trying to assassinate his character so now the truth is out" said Williams' mother, Temako McCarthy.

McCarthy said the monetary judgement can't erase what happened.

"Is he gonna walk back in the door? Are we going to have Christmas, Thanksgiving and birthdays?"

She said the jury's verdict showed that another group of eyes saw what the family knew - that her son's death could have been prevented.

"And everyday it's like a piece of me died going through depositions or going through court. Sitting up there everyday is physically and mentally draining."

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