Jury: Charlotte officer used excessive force in death

The Associated Press

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CHARLOTTE — A federal jury says a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police officer used excessive force on a man who died after being shocked twice by the officer’s Taser.

Area news media outlets reported that the jury awarded the parents of La-Reko Williams $500,000. The five women and three men on the jury voted not to award punitive damages.

Williams’ parents filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Forbes, asking for $3.5 million in damages.

Williams died July 20, 2011, after being shocked twice by CMPD Officer Michael Forbes, who had responded to a call about a fight at a light-rail station.

The jury’s award against Forbes will be paid by the city. City Attorney Bob Hagemann said Williams’ death was tragic yet unintended. He said the city respects the jury’s decision.