Connecticut Cop Assailed Over 2013 Killing

     BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CN) – Police shot and killed a 21-year-old fleeing man in the back after already shooting him in the legs and disarming him, the victim’s estate claims in court.
     The April 17 complaint against Bridgeport, its chief of police and Officer Christopher Borona says the incident occurred on April 1, 2013, while Bryan Jamal Stukes was arguing with someone outside Golfinho’s Fish Market, holding an unloaded .22 caliber rifle.
     Borona allegedly exited the store, yelled at Stukes and drew his service weapon.
     A startled Stukes began to run with his rifle aimed toward the ground, according to the complaint.
     Borona allegedly brought Stukes with a.45 caliber hollow-point bullet that struck both of his legs.
     Stukes threw his rifle, which proved to be unloaded, as he fell, and the weapon slid approximately 10 feet on the sidewalk “within Defendant Borona’s line of sight, before coming to a rest,” according to the complaint.
     “Despite suffering a gunshot wound to both legs, the plaintiff’s decedent stood up and attempted to flee from Borona’s gunfire,” the complaint states. “Although the plaintiff’s decedent was attempting to flee, he had his back to Borona and Borona was only five feet behind the plaintiff’s decedent in pursuit.”
     Borona’s next shot missed, and Stukes “was able to continue moving down the sidewalk and onto Benham Avenue unarmed, and defendant Borona clearly knew he was unarmed,” the complaint continues.
     When Borona first his weapon a third time, he got Stukes in the back, piercing the man’s heart and killing him, the estate claims.
     To “hide the fact he fired three shots at the plaintiff’s decedent,” Borona then loaded another bullet into his service weapon.
     The estate says the second bullet Borona fired “was later recovered by plaintiff’s private investigator” near the scene.
     A report by the Chief State Attorney’s Office cleared Borona of using deadly force on a suspect, but was unable to explain the third bullet.
     That report concluded Borona was shot twice based on the number of bullets found in his gun and witnesses who said they heard two shots.
     “It is likely that one shot caused both thigh wounds and the other shot caused the other wound,” the report found. “It should be noted that one expended projectile was recovered from a second floor porch of a home located on the east side of Benham Avenue. Ballistics indicate that it came from Detective Borona’s gun. It is unknown how this projectile ended up in this location.”
     The civil lawsuit filed last week in Bridgeport Superior Court questions that conclusion and seeks punitive damages.
     The estate is represented by Martin Minnella of Middlebury.

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