Richard Chrisman Shooting: Mother of Victim Files $30 Million Notice of Claim Against City of Phoenix

The mother of a Phoenix man senselessly shot by Phoenix police Officer Richard Chrisman last year has filed a $30 million notice of claim against the officer, the city of Phoenix, and the Phoenix Police Department for the wrongful death of her son.

Daniel Rodriguez -- and his dog -- were fatally shot by Chrisman when he and another officer responded to a domestic violence call at the victim's home. The call was placed by Rodriguez's mother, Elvira Fernandez, who according to the notice of claim, called police after she and her son got into an argument about a vehicle and he threw something into a wall.

"Every day, every hour, every minute and every second, since October 5, 2010, I regretted ever making that 9-1-1 call," Fernandez says.

Click here for all the details of the shooting.

According to the notice of claim, prior to police showing up, Fernandez told a 9-1-1 operator no guns were in the house, but that didn't stop Chrisman from allegedly entering the house without permission and holding a gun to Rodriguez's head so hard that it left bruising visible during an autopsy --and that was before fatally shooting the unarmed man.

Fernandez, the notice of claim states, "sustained deprivation of her son's society, love, companionship, and comfort, and she has suffered from sorrow, grief, mental anguish, depression, nervousness, and will continue to do so in the future."

Fernandez claims the sound of the shots that killed her son, and the images of his dead body on the floor of her home -- next to a dead dog -- "remains fresh in her head."

The claim states the mental anguish Fernandez now suffers is the direct result of Chrisman "intentionally, recklessly, wantonly, and with gross negligence, and reckless disregard of [her] and Daniel Rodriguz's rights."

Fernandez charges that the city is also to blame for not adequately supervising or training Chrisman, which led to his reckless abuse of power.

The notice also gets into some of Chrisman's other misdeeds while a member of the Phoenix Police Department, including his involvement in a time theft scam (which you can read about here) and another incident where he planted a crack pipe on a mentally ill woman (check out the video of that incident here).

As for putting a price on the death of her son, the notice states "undoubtedly, if Ms. Elvira Fernandez is required to choose between accepting $100 million or having Daniel Frank Rodriguez alive, there is no doubt that she would choose to have Daniel alive today."

The claim also cites a 1997 wrongful death lawsuit filed against the city for the death of Edward Mallet, whose family was awarded $45 million after he was killed by a police officer -- who wasn't even on the Brady List, as Chrisman was at the time of the shooting -- who put him in a neck hold as he was allegedly resisting arrest.

"I called the police to come and calm down my son," Fernandez says, "I never expected them to come and kill my son...I hope no other mother, father, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, grandparents, friends or anyone else will veer have to go through this senseless loss of life and emotional pain."

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James King
Contact: James King