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Appeals court sends Frederick Taser death case to trial

FREDERICK — A federal appeals court says a Frederick County sheriff’s deputy can be tried for allegedly using excessive force by firing an electronic stun gun at a Frederick man who later died.

The Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., ruled Wednesday that Cpl. Rudolph Torres’ appeal of a lower court ruling was flawed.

Among other things, the court found that Torres incorrectly referred to the complaint as a wrongful death claim.

The family of 20-year-old Jarrel Gray is seeking $145 million from Torres, the sheriff’s office and the county.

Torres hit Gray twice with a Taser while trying to break up a fight in November 2007. A grand jury found in 2008 that Gray had not obeyed Torres’ commands to show his hands. Gray’s family says he was trying to comply.

One comment

  1. I don’t see how shocking someone only twice with a TASER can qualify as excessive force. The deputy certainly had no idea that hitting Mr. Gray with a TASER would cause his death.

    I’m certainly sorry for the Gray family, but this is just another example of how we make a big deal out of things that aren’t likely to harm us and tend to ignore the things that pose more harm to our lives. See this link: