Mother wins lawsuit; article forgets to mention the gun

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Back in 2002, Michael Wayne Goodman was approached by a Pct. 4 Deputy Constable. Goodman assaulted the deputy and fled. The deputy sent his dog after him. Goodman got a hold of the dog and attempted to drown it. The deputy caught up, and pulled Goodman off of him and the two fought. Goodman reached for something behind his back and the deputy shot and killed him fearing it was a weapon. At the scene, the sheriff’s detectives never found the weapon. That’s because Goodman had either thrown or tossed it in a nearby ditch (filled with water) when he was shot. A day or two later, a relative of Goodman (who, if memory serves, was a Texas Ranger) came to the scene and found Goodman’s pistol in the ditch after the water had level dropped.

Goodman’s mother sued Harris County, and won.

I wasn’t in the court room so I missed all the arguments, but that’s not what I’m writing this post for. What struck me about this article is that it failed to mention the fact that Goodman did indeed have a weapon. The pistol recovered later was traced back to him. Even Goodman’s own relatives told investigators that he was known to carry a pistol. County Attorney Mike Stafford said he will “aggressively appeal.” It will be interesting to see how this turns out.

While looking up other articles in this case, I found this site, which is a table of officer-involved shootings the Chronicle put together. Scroll down to 04/14/2002. It says whether or not Goodman had a gun is “in dispute.” Yet, the summary says his gun was found later. That same summary says that the deputy sent his dog to attack Goodman, failing to mention that Goodman assaulted him first. Funny, the Chronicle sometimes contradicts itself in the same breath.

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