Suit Seeks $25M After Michigan Boy Fatally Struck By Sheriff's Deputy

June 19, 2019 - 11:31 am

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WWJ/AP) - The family of an 11-year-old boy who was hit and killed by a sheriff's deputy while riding a minibike in southern Michigan has filed a lawsuit seeking $25 million.

The Battle Creek Enquirer reports the lawsuit filed this month by the estate of Norman Hood Jr. and his parents lists Calhoun County and the unnamed deputy as defendants.

The deputy was responding to a reported burglary in the nearby city of Springfield the evening of May 28 when he hit the boy in the 900 block of West Michigan Ave. in Battle Creek, about 120 miles west of Detroit. The boy was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. 

While the sheriff's office believes the bike turned into the car's path, the boy's mother says he wasn't at fault.

The vehicle's overhead lights and siren were not activated. The minibike was not lit either, although it is unclear whether it was equipped with lights.

Sheriff Matt Saxton called the boy's death "heartbreaking."

 "There’s nothing at this point that leads me to believe that the deputy intentionally did this, obviously," he told WWMT-TV. "I mean, he was responding to a call."

The Associated Press left a message seeking comment from the county on the lawsuit Wednesday. 

An investigation by Michigan State Police is ongoing.