Washington DC Wrongful Death Lawsuit Accuses Police of Negligence and Failure to Protect

Kimberly Trimble is suing the District of Columbia, the Metropolitan Police Department, and unnamed cops for Washington DC wrongful death and police negligence, failure to protect, and failure to respond in the stabbing deaths of her sister and nephews. She is also suing Joseph Randolph Mays, who is charged with three counts of first-degree murder in their slayings.

The victims, Erika Peters, 37, and her children Dakota Peters, 10, and Erik Harper, 11, were killed during a domestic dispute in March 2009. Documented injuries included multiple stab wounds to the head, face, (over a dozen to the) chest, and hands for Erika, multiple stab wounds to the chest and a large laceration on the side of the head for Erik, and stab wounds to the head, right ear, and the back of the neck for Dakota.

Mays was Peters’ live-in boyfriend. Police later found him at the murder scene with superficial chest wounds that the treating doctor says appear to have been self-inflicted.

In her DC wrongful death complaint, Trimble noted that even though the Metropolitan Police Department had been called to her sister’s residence before to look into child abuse and domestic violence calls, the cops, who could hear Peters and her children screaming as Mays stabbed them, waited for about an hour to act because they were standing by for permission to break down the door. Also, Trimble says that when the police officers called 911, the operator told them that the call had been made by a screaming child who may have been playing pretend.

Trimble is seeking over $60 million in Washington DC wrongful death and negligence damages.

Cops Dawdled as Kids Died, Aunt Says, Courthouse News Service, March 23, 2010
Charges Are Filed In Triple Stabbing, Washington Post, March 23, 2009
Joseph Randolph Mays: ‘I Told Them To Stop Fucking With Me’, Washington DC City Paper, March 24, 2010
Related Web Resources:

Metropolitan Police Department

Domestic Violence, The National Center for Victims of Crime

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