NATIONAL NEWS

Family of girl killed by police during Kansas standoff sues

Mar 27, 2023, 1:33 PM

BAXTER SPRINGS, Kan. (AP) — The family of a toddler who was fatally shot by a police officer during a standoff last year between her father and law enforcement has filed a federal lawsuit over her death.

Kansas authorities have said that 2-year-old Clesslyn Crawford was shot by a Joplin, Missouri, police officer during a confrontation March 26, 2022, in Baxter Springs.

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation had said Crawford’s 37-year-old father, Eli Crawford, shot and killed the girl’s mother, 27-year-old Taylor Dawn Shutte, and fired at officers for more than three hours before fatally shooting himself.

The Wichita Eagle reports that the girl’s family sued the cities of Baxter Springs and Joplin along with Cherokee County and the unnamed officer who fired the shot that killed the toddler. The lawsuit said they were responsible for the girl’s death.

Those cities and Cherokee County didn’t immediately respond to calls from the newspaper seeking comment on the lawsuit.

Officers from the Joplin police department and Cherokee County sheriff’s department responded to the standoff. Joplin is 15 miles (25 kilometers) northeast of Baxter Springs.

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