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Johns Creek sued over 2018 police shooting

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JOHNS CREEK — The family of a Johns Creek woman who was shot and killed by police officers in April 2018 has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the city. 

The Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), The Awad Law Firm and Spear & Filipovits announced the filing on behalf of the family of Shukri Ali Said.

Said, a 36-year-old Somali-American Muslim woman, was killed by police officers while experiencing a mental health crisis in 2018.

“Shukri Said was a vibrant, intelligent, and caring young woman loved by her family,” Ibrahim Awad of The Awad Law Firm said in a statement. “Her life and dreams were violently cut short by the reckless, unlawful actions of these four police officers, and by extension, the City of Johns Creek.”

The lawsuit accuses four Johns Creek police officers of engaging in excessive force by firing a Taser and bean bag at Said and then shooting the 127-pound woman five times in the head, chest, and neck.

“Police brutality, particularly against communities of color, continues to be an ever-growing stain on the fabric of our nation,” CAIR-Georgia Legal and Policy Director Murtaza Khwaja said. “For too long, far too many black lives and dreams have been shattered by the actions of hyper-militarized police officers who escape justice for excessive force. While nothing can replace the life that was lost, we hope this legal action will help Shukri’s family obtain justice for her death.”

At 7:13 a.m., April 28, 2018, Johns Creek Police responded to call that a “woman had threatened a family member with a knife,” the Georgia Bureau of Investigation reported.

Police were approaching Winherst Lane, where the call originated, when they found the woman walking outside near the intersection of Abbotts Bridge and Sweet Creek roads.

Police said Said did not drop the knife she was carrying despite “several attempts” to de-escalate the encounter. Officers used a Taser and a “non-lethal projectile,” but Said did not drop the knife.

Eventually, two officers opened fire and hit Said, the GBI said. Said was transported by ambulance to Emory Johns Creek Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. No officers were injured.

According to a Georgia Bureau of Investigation document, officers Phil Nguyen and Richard Gray shot Said, while officers Ken Kennebrew and Derrick Wilson Tased her. All four are now back on active duty with the Johns Creek Police Department.

The City of Johns Creek had no comment on the suit.

“The city can’t provide any additional information or response related to the lawsuit issue because it is a pending legal matter,” the city said in a statement.

Carson Cook is an Editor with Appen Media Group and covers Johns Creek, Dunwoody and Fulton County.

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