A man who was mistakenly shot in the leg by sheriff’s deputies in West Hollywood in 2014 will receive a $2.5 million settlement from Los Angeles County.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved the settlement with Liam Mulligan, 30, at the board’s May 31 meeting. Mulligan’s lawsuit alleged deputies used excessive force and violated his civil rights. The board voted unanimously to approve the settlement, which will be paid by the county’s insurance company, according to the Los Angeles County Chief Executive Office.
The approval marks the second settlement in the shooting, which occurred on April 7, 2014 at an apartment building at 939 Palm Ave. Deputies mistakenly shot and killed another man, John Winkler, 30, during the same incident. The county paid a $5 million settlement to Winkler’s family.
The shooting stemmed from a violent attack at the apartment building allegedly perpetrated by Alexander McDonald, 29. Mulligan was McDonald’s roommate, and Winkler and another man were visiting them at the apartment.
McDonald, whom authorities said was acting erratically, armed himself with a knife and stabbed Mulligan. Neighbors called police, and deputies gathered in front of McDonald and Mulligan’s apartment. Just prior to forcing entry, Mulligan ran out bleeding profusely, followed by Winkler. Deputies thought Winkler was the armed perpetrator and opened fire.
Mulligan was accidently shot in the leg, and Winkler was shot and killed. Moments later, deputies entered the apartment and found McDonald struggling with the other man, who was not seriously injured. McDonald was arrested and has remained in custody since the incident. The motive for the attack is unclear, and authorities have not disclosed whether McDonald was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has charged McDonald with one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder and one count of torture. The charges reflect the position that the incident would not have occurred without McDonald’s actions.
McDonald has pleaded not guilty and is scheduled to return to court on July 19 for a pretrial hearing.
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