Mother Says Stoned|Security Guard Killed Son

     TULSA (CN) – After four months of paralysis, an Oklahoma man died of a gunshot from an apartment complex security guard who was high on marijuana, his mother claims in court.
     Zondra Magness, the mother of 21-year-old Monroe Bird III, sued the security guard, Ricky Stone, 57, in Tulsa County Court on Aug. 6.
     She also sued Benjy D. Smith with Smith and Son Security, property owner Deerfield Estates LLC and property manager JAPM.
     Magness says her son was talking with a friend in Bird’s car on Feb. 4 in the Deerfield Estates Apartment Complex, where her son lived, when Stone, “wielding a handgun,” ordered them out of the car to identify themselves. She claims Stone was “illegally in possession of and impaired by marijuana” during the confrontation.
     Magness says her son did not know who Stone was, nor “why he was holding a gun, or why he was ordering them to get out of the car.”
     When Stone tried to open the door of her son’s car, her son locked it. “Afraid for his life, Monroe Bird started his car, intending to leave the premises but defendant Ricky Stone began banging on the truck of Monroe’s car, demanding again that Monroe Bird and his friend get out of the car or he would shoot them,” Magness says in the complaint.
     “As Monroe Bird was driving his car forward and away from Ricky Stone in order to find safety, defendant Ricky Stone fired multiple shots at Monroe Bird’s vehicle,” the complaint states.
     “As Monroe Bird drove away, one of the shots fired by defendant Ricky Stone struck Monroe in his back, specifically in the area of his cervical spine, severing and destroying his spinal cord, rendering Monroe Bird totally disabled and causing his car to go out of control, strike a tree and come to rest some 50 yards or more from where Monroe Bird and his friend were first confronted by defendant Stone.”
     Bird lay paralyzed in his mother’s home for four months before being hospitalized for pulmonary thromboembolism. He died on June 30.
     Bird told her he had done nothing wrong and should not have been shot. She says her son’s medical bills exceeded $1 million.
     Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler declined to criminally charge Stone, concluding his actions were justified.
     “I understand and empathize with the pain the family of Monroe Bird is experiencing,” he told the Tulsa World on July 2. “My decision to decline to file criminal charges in the shooting was based upon the evidence provided to me following an investigation of the Tulsa Police Department. However, Stone was charged in May with one count of drug possession after he admitted to police he had a small amount of marijuana in his car during the shooting.”
     There was no indication from police officers or medical personnel at the scene that Stone was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, Kunzweiler told the World.
     Magness seeks punitive damages for negligence and wrongful death.
     She is represented by Damario Solomon-Simmons with Riggs Abney in Tulsa.

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