Family’s suit alleges prosecutors’ comments led to suicide of Nebraska bar owner

Nebraska News

A “sorry we’re closed” sign sits in the entrance surrounded by broken glass at the Hive at 1207 Harney Street, near where a man was shot to death during the second night of protests on Sunday, May 31, 2020.. They were protesting the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police. (Chris Machian/Omaha World-Herald via AP)

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The family of a white Nebraska bar owner who killed himself after being charged in the fatal shooting of a Black man during 2020 protests over racial injustice is suing local prosecutors, saying their comments led to his suicide.

The Omaha World-Herald reports that the parents of Jake Gardner sued the Douglas County Attorney’s Office, its top prosecutor and a special prosecutor in federal court on Monday.

The lawsuit accuses special prosecutor Frederick Franklin and Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine of violating Gardner’s constitutional rights and accuses Franklin of implying that Gardner was a racist.

Gardner had been charged with manslaughter and other felonies in May 30, 2020, shooting death of 22-year-old James Scurlock.

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