Wrongful Death Lawsuit To Be Filed Against St. Louis Police Department

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A wrongful death suit will be filed Monday against the St. Louis Police Department and one of its officers. Anthony Lamar Smith, 24, suspected of drug dealing, was killed by police in December.

The case, to be filed in federal court in St. Louis, includes allegations of civil rights violations. Police say Smith, a known gang member, had a gun. Attorney Al Watkins, who is filing the case on behalf of Smith's one year old daughter, said Saturday the gun was planted.

Watkins says he has video and audio evidence and a third party witness who was listening on a cell phone. A motorist assist system in the dashboard known as "On Star" was activated when the car Smith was driving crashed into a police SUV near West Florissant and Acme.

The St. Louis Police Department has asked the FBI to review the shooting of Smith. The department would not comment on the case other than to say the department takes the allegations regarding the shooting "seriously."

Watkins said the police officer who fired the fatal shot, "was identified as somebody who did not have the personality, characteristics and traits that were consistent with being a law enforcement officer," but was hired anyway.

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