Port St. Lucie man, Gregory Vaughn Hill Jr. was shot by police on January 14, 2014 when they showed up to his home to respond to a noise complaint. A woman called and complained about loud music from Mr. Hill’s garage when she was on her way to collect her child from pre-school.
According to police reports, Gregory was found with an unloaded gun. It is unlikely that he was holding the gun at the time of this incident.
On Friday June 1, 2018 a jury ruled that there was no excessive force used and that Mr. Hill was ultimately the cause of his own death because he was drunk.
Keep in mind there is no law that prevents a man from being drunk in the privacy of their home.
According to the New York Times, officers arrived and knocked on the garage door. Hill opened the door then attempted to close it upon seeing the police outside. They police subsequently fired four shots. Gregory suffered three gunshot wounds, one of which was in the head.
A judge asked the jury to decide if Mr Hill’s constitutional rights had been violated and, if so, whether his family should receive compensation. After deliberating for only a few hours, the jury decided that Mr. Hill’s family would be rewarded $1 per family member. A dollar for his mother to help with funeral costs and a dollar to each of his children.
Since the jury decided that this slaying was 99% the fault of Gregory Hill, the sheriff’s department is only obligated to pay 1% of the damages, which amounts to a lousy four cents.
The price of a human life unjustly taken by the police force has been reduced to four cents.
The family lawyer of the deceased, John Phillips has started a funding page which can be found here. He finds the allocation of $1 highly insulting and plans to draft a motion for a new trial.