On the day attorneys representing the parents, grandparents and children of Stephon Clark filed a lawsuit against the city of Sacramento and the two police officers who killed the 22-year-old man in the backyard of his grandparents’ house, the district attorney’s office announced there would be a delay in its review of the case.
In a statement released Monday, the office said it had just received “further substantial investigative reports and related materials from the Attorney General’s Department of Justice investigators.”
“Our timeline for completion of our review has thus been delayed as we process the supplemental materials. We will take whatever time is needed to ensure a fair, thorough, and accurate review of this matter,” the statement said.
The Sacramento Police Department concluded its investigation into the shooting in October. There has been no indication that any type of disciplinary action has been taken against either Officer Terrence Mercadal or Officer Jared Robinet. Both officers returned to duty a month after the shooting.
Clark was killed by the officers, who were responding to reports of a man breaking into cars in the Meadowview neighborhood of Sacramento. A sheriff’s helicopter led the officers to Clark’s location. They claimed they thought he had a gun, but it was later revealed he was only holding a cell phone.
Both officers fired 10 shots each, and 8 of the 20 shots hit Clark, mostly in his back.
Officers then withheld lifesaving medical attention because they believed Clark was lying on the ground playing dead. They did not identify themselves as police officers until five minutes after Clark had been shot and lay dying on the his grandmother’s patio.
The district attorney’s office specified that its job in this analysis is to determine “whether the conduct of the two Sacramento police officers constitutes a prosecutable crime under established California law.”
Clark’s family filed a lawsuit alleging federal civil rights violations on Monday.