Clark County lawyers: Deputy ‘reasonably’ thought photographer had gun


It reasonably appeared to Clark County Deputy Jacob Shaw that a news photographer he shot in September had a gun and was a potential danger to the public, lawyers for Clark County allege in their response to a lawsuit.

PREVIOUSLY: News photographer shot by Clark County deputy sues

Photographer Andy Grimm sued the deputy, Clark County and the city of New Carlisle in December, seeking damages for what he called “excessive use of force and violation of Mr. Grimm’s constitutional and common law rights.”

Grimm, a photographer for the New Carlisle News, was shot by Shaw on Sept. 4 on Main Street in New Carlisle while preparing to take photos of the deputy at a traffic stop. Shaw can be heard on body camera footage obtained by the Springfield News-Sun apologizing to Grimm and saying he believed his camera to be a weapon.

“Defendants aver that it reasonably appeared to Deputy Shaw that Andrew Grimm possessed a firearm under the conditions facing him, in the course and scope of his employment, and in good faith, to make a split-second decision to discharge his weapon in order to protect the public and himself from perceived deadly harm,” the response from the county’s lawyers says.

EXTRA: Top stories of 2017: Andy Grimm shot by Clark County deputy

Much of the county’s response is denying several of the allegations in the lawsuit. Grimm’s actions that night might have played a role in the shooting, the county’s response says.

“Plaintiff Andrew Grimm’s own contributory and or comparative negligence and/or assumption of the risk may have caused or contributed to cause the injuries and damages of which he complains,” the response says.

Grimm declined to comment on Tuesday and the county’s attorneys haven’t responded to requests for comment.

RELATED: Clark County deputy shooting of news photographer heads to grand jury

In the lawsuit, Grimm says he suffered serious injuries and financial suffering that he believes the county is responsible for.

“The nature of the injury has caused plaintiff to lose wages for time taken off to heal from the injury,” it says. “The loss of wages suffered by Andrew Grimm is serious and of a nature that no reasonable person could be expected to endure.”

The lawsuit also alleges Grimm’s wife, Melanie Grimm and KBA News LLC, which publishes the New Carlisle News, have suffered due to the shooting.

“Plantiff KBA News, LLC asserts loss of business profits as local law enforcement agencies have retaliated against the business in response to the events of Sept. 4,” the lawsuit says.

In a statement sent to the Springfield News-Sun previously, attorney’s for the county said the defendants aren’t responsible.

“We cannot comment regarding claims against Deputy Shaw because there is an ongoing investigation,” a statement released by the attorneys says. “Clark County and the city of New Carlisle deny all claims against them.”

The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations is handling the investigation into the deputy-involved shooting. That investigation likely will head to a grand jury soon, spokesman Dan Tierney said. He declined further comment.

The sheriff’s office has said it will do an internal investigation into Shaw’s actions after the state’s investigation is completed. Shaw returned to duty in October, reassigned then to the jail.

3 related stories:

Photographer shot by Clark County deputy claims lost wages, pain

Body camera released of Ohio news photographer shot by deputy



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Crime

FBI joins search for missing North Carolina boy with special needs
FBI joins search for missing North Carolina boy with special needs

The search for a 6-year-old North Carolina boy who vanished from a Gastonia park will continue for a third day on Monday. Maddox Ritch was last seen at Rankin Lake Park on Saturday with his father and a friend. Overnight, dozens of people continued to look for the child, and more than two dozen agencies are helping with the search and investigation...
Navistar focused on efficiency in Springfield plant
Navistar focused on efficiency in Springfield plant

Navistar’s Springfield plant is focusing on making its manufacturing processes more efficient and identifying problems earlier to improve the quality of its vehicles. The company has invested millions in new equipment in Springfield over the past several years to revamp the interior of the facility and streamline its manufacturing processes,...
High school cross country runner dies after collapsing at meet
High school cross country runner dies after collapsing at meet

A high school cross country runner from North Carolina died Sunday morning, hours after she collapsed at a meet in Charlotte, Moore County School officials said. Officials said Samantha Davis died around 12:30 a.m. at Novant Presbyterian Medical Center. Davis, a senior from Union Pines High School, was competing in the Hare & Hounds Invitational...
Showers, cool temperatures return to start the work-week
Showers, cool temperatures return to start the work-week

Showers return today Strong storms possible Tuesday Staying in 70s this week  TODAY: Showers return as we get closer to sunrise this morning. Highs today are on the cool side with lots of clouds though most areas will stick around 70 degrees. Scattered showers will be on and off through the afternoon/evening. There’s a chance for thunder...
Teen injured in crash that kills father months after losing mother
Teen injured in crash that kills father months after losing mother

Doctors are treating a Georgia teenager after a deadly car crash that killed his father. Kevin Buice, 19, of Walton County, is in the hospital with broken bones. Last Saturday night, his father, Richard, picked him up from his manager shift at a local Domino's Pizza.  As they were driving home, a car reportedly crossed into their lane...
More Stories