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Family of KC man killed by officers sues area police agencies

The family of a man shot to death in Platte County last year filed a wrongful death lawsuit today against multiple area police agencies and police officers.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, alleges that officers violated the civil rights of Mahir S. Al-Akim during the March 18, 2010, incident near Northwest Gateway Drive and Northwest Vivion Road.

Seven officers from several different departments allegedly fired shots at the 30-year-old Kansas City resident, according to the allegations.

Defendants named in the suit include officers and officials with the Platte County Sheriff’s Office and police departments of Kansas City, Riverside, Platte Woods, North Kansas City and Gladstone.

Several months after the incident, Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd ruled that officers were justified in shooting Al-Akim, who was carrying a weapon and appeared to point it at officers.

The gun turned out to be a pellet gun. Zahnd said that a witness later told investigators that Al-Akim threatened to commit suicide by pointing a pellet pistol at police, according to Zahnd.

Robert C. Sullivan, the attorney who filed the civil suit on behalf of Al-Akim’s sister, said the prosecutor’s ruling pertained to whether or not the officers’ actions constituted a crime but did not address the civil issues raised in Tuesday’s lawsuit.

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