SAN DIEGO (AP) — The parents of a man shot in the head by a San Diego County sheriff's deputy who fired 13 bullets during a car chase in February plan to file a claim against the county, the family's attorneys said.
Jose and Rosaura Corrales demanded answers from the Sheriff's Department during a news conference Friday about the death of their 31-year-old son, Mizael Corrales.
“Why 13 times? And why does he have to be shot in the head? Why like that?” asked Jose Corrales.
Attorneys for the Corrales family said they will file a claim against San Diego County this week, the Union-Tribune reported. Such claims are typically a precursor to a lawsuit.
The Sheriff’s Department declined comment, citing the pending litigation.
Mizael Corrales was driving a Mercedes in Otay Mesa on Feb. 19 when he tried to flee authorities in a strip mall parking lot, knocking two deputies to the ground as he backed into vehicles, according to police and sheriff’s officials.
One of those deputies, a 16-year department veteran, scrambled to his feet and opened fire at Corrales. Video of the incident shows glass flying as bullets pierce and break the driver’s side window, according to the Union-Tribune.
Family attorney John Burris said Friday that the “evidence is clear here that the officer was not in a position of danger when he shot the car 13 times,” Burris said.
“You cannot create a confrontation, shoot your way out of it and claim self-defense,” he said.
Authorities said the SUV was stolen. Corrales’ parents and their attorneys dispute that assertion, saying Corrales had an arrangement with the owner and had been driving the vehicle for months.
The District Attorney’s Office review of the Corrales case has not been completed, an office spokesperson told the newspaper Friday.