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Friday, June 14, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Cops Told Son to Jump, Mother Says

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - A mother claims San Francisco police officers joined in the chants of a "bloodthirsty" mob, encouraging her son to jump from the ledge of a downtown building - and he did, killing himself. She sued the city and its police force for wrongful death.

Kathy Yount says her son, Dylan, "walked onto the ledge of his building" near Union Square and the Powell Street Cable Car line on Feb. 10, 2010.

As he stood on the ledge, "a large crowd began to gather on the street below. ... The crowd, resembling a 17th century mob, grew unruly and bloodthirsty screaming for decedent to jump," according to the complaint.

The grieving mother says that "San Francisco Police Department plain clothed and uniformed officers also shouted cries of encouragement for decedent to jump to his death in unison with the unruly bullying crowd. ...

"After one hour on the ledge, and with no attempt whatsoever by defendants to intervene, decedent gave in to the pleas of the officers and the crowd and jumped from the ledge to the street below.

"Under information and belief, upon landing, decedent was not medically treated, nor was his body covered."

Yount says that her son's death "was a foreseeable harm resulting from defendants encouraging decedent to end his own life, failure to exercise the duty of care owed to decedent by employing a negotiator trained in such situations, or to employ standard tactics to control the bloodthirsty crowd, or medically treat decedent."

She seeks $25 million from the City and County of San Francisco, the San Francisco fire and police departments, Citrus Heights, and the Citrus Heights Police Department.

She is represented by Orestes Cross with Walston Cross.

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