The U.S. Supreme Court chose not to review the civil rights case of an innocent Florida man who was fatally shot by a Lake County sheriff’s deputy in his own home, reported Daily Commercial.
Andrew Scott was killed at his home at the Blueberry Hill apartments on July 15, 2012, during a search for a suspect in Leesburg.
Sheriff’s deputies knocked on Scott’s door at 1:30 a.m. after finding the suspect’s motorcycle int he parking lot. Scott, not the suspect, was watching TV with his girlfriend, Miranda Mauck.
Mauck said Deputy Richard Sylvester never identified himself as a law enforcement officer, so Scott had a gun when answering the strange, middle of the night knock on the door. He violated no laws and was pointing his gun down at the floor when he opened the door. The killer shot 6 times, hitting Scott with 4 of the shots.
Mauck and Scott’s family, Amy Young and John Scott, sued Sylvester and then-Sheriff Gary Borders, claiming Scott’s Constitutional rights had been violated.
Borders said deputies were required to identify themselves if they were serving a warrant, but not if they were knocking on a door requesting assistance or getting information. That was also true, he said, if a deputy “is seeking a suspect who may be in the dwelling but (the officer) does not intend to enter the dwelling forcibly.”
The district court judge blamed the victim for the police officer’s actions and ruled that police can kill people who choose to use their constitutional right to be safe in their own home.
Scott’s gun was obviously just to deter people, if he had intended to actually kill someone, the cop would be dead and Scott would be in jail. Instead, Scott is dead and the killer was not punished.
“By any measure, this is a tragic case,” U.S. District Judge Anne C. Conway wrote in her ruling in September 2014. “The court sympathizes with Plaintiff’s loss. The court also understands the sentiment held by some in the community who believe that an innocent person who answered a late-night knock at his door was needlessly killed by police. But Andrew Scott made a fateful decision that night: He chose to answer his door with a gun in his hand. That changed everything. That is the one thing that — more than anything else — led to this tragedy.”
Sylvester claimed Scott was pointing his gun in his face, so the cop feared for his life and was reasonable to kill the man, according to the ruling.
The deputy would have us believe he was such an amazing quick draw, they he was able to draw his weapon, aim, and fire before the man he feared was able to simply pull a trigger.
The Supreme Court, which typically does not give reasons for declining cases, declined to review the case. The 11th District Court of Appeals also rejected an appeal.
So the killer cop will face no criminal or civil consequences for killing an innocent man in his own home.