Multiple central Ohio law enforcement agencies faced lawsuits after two men claimed officers shot them while they were unarmed.
Officers said that they were forced to shoot at Dustin Dugan’s blue Dodge Neon in February because he attempted to use the vehicle as a weapon. The Central Ohio Drug Task Force investigation in Perry County ended with the windshield of Dugan’s vehicle filled with bullet holes.
Attorney Michael Cox said that his clients, Dugan and his passenger, whose identity was not released, were shot by undercover officers from the New Lexington Police Department and the Perry County Sheriff’s Office.
Cox claimed that the officers used excessive force during the shooting, causing Dugan significant injuries to his hip and neck. Dugan required at least 10 surgeries to repair the damage. The passenger in the vehicle suffered minor injuries.
“This will affect him for the rest of his life and probably will reduce his life expectancy with the number of internal injuries,” Cox said.
Cox said that officers believed the vehicle Cox was driving was stolen.
“It was Mr. Dugan’s girlfriend’s (vehicle) and all indications are he had permission to drive the vehicle,” Cox said.
In February, the sheriff told 10TV News that Dugan attempted to run an officer over. Cox said that was not possible.
“The photographs from the scene show the car was completely boxed in, bumper to bumper,” Cox said. “It was impossible to move.”
According to the Newark Advocate, both officers involved were placed on paid administrative leave after the incident, and have since returned to duty.
Perry County Commissioners Office and the New Lexington Police Department did not return calls from10TV News. The Perry County Sheriff’s Office said that they had not yet received the lawsuit.
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