ASO settles in lawsuit after Dentmond shooting

Published: Mar. 27, 2018 at 5:16 PM EDT
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The Alachua County Sheriff's Office has settled a lawsuit related to the Robert Dentmond shooting, when deputies and officers shot about 40 bullets at the teen, killing him in the Majestic Oaks apartment complex two years ago.

Neighbors had property damage when bullets broke car windows and went into homes, most of which was reimbursed through the Sheriff's Office insurance claims.

One woman, Shirley Johnson, said multiple bullets flew into her home. Johnson was sitting in her living room on the night suicidal the 16 year old called police carrying a fake gun, and was eventually shot and killed in March of 2016. She filed a lawsuit against the Sheriff's Office and the city of Gainesville in June of 2017. The Gainesville Police Department was the assisting agencies on the call.

"Shots were fired and a volley of bullets went through her apartment, striking objects in the apartment and thank God it did not strike her," said her attorney, Robert Rush.

She told us in June, "One hit over the kitchen table in the corner, a big hole over my daughters bedroom, she could have sit up and it would have killed her."

"That many bullets fired in a residential area where people are there, somebody needs to take a real strong look at that procedure and policy," said Rush.

The Sheriff's Office settled. Johnson will receive $1,250 in damages.

Rush said it was not about the money for Johnson, but about getting her somewhere she feels safe. "It's a nominal amount that helps her move, gets her relocated, gets her to replace some of the furniture, and it's a pro-bono case on my part," he said.

"It was the right thing to do to settle it, not only for mrs. Johnson but for the county and to move on from here," said ASO Spokesperson Art Forgey.

Rush said they're still negotiating with the city but they plan on filing an amended lawsuit, dropping the complaints against the Sheriff's Office.