Father, husband, community member, murdered by Troy police in April 2016

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  1. City of Troy, French Appeal Heard in Second Circuit Court of Appeals, NY

    Today oral arguments were presented to the three-panel judges of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals of NY. 1 2

    In September, 2019, Federal Judge, U.S. Magistrate Daniel J. Stewart declined a motion by the City of Troy to dismiss the civil lawsuit, Cinthia Thevenin vs. The City of Troy et al. The City of Troy, at the time, argued that Sgt. Randall French was authorized in his use of deadly physical force in the murder of Edson Thevenin.

    Magistrate Stewart noted that there were too many conflicting accounts from witnesses, citing the testimony of Phillip Gross, and ruled that the trial should continue as a jury trial.

    "An internal affairs' investigation that had been concealed by Troy city officials also concluded last year that French was not in imminent danger when he fired the first two rounds through Thevenin's windshield."3

    On September 25, 2019, the City of Troy and Officer French filed an appeal of this decision-- that there were "'material questions of fact' about the shooting that should be resolved by a jury of trial" and it is now finally being heard by the Court of Appeals.4

    The decision of the appeals court will determine if the civil lawsuit proceeds. Danielle French, the widow of Officer Randall French, has joined the case as an appellant after Officer French passed away from Covid-19 in April 2020.5 6

    1. Full audio of March 9, 2021 oral arguments presented in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals of NY.
    2. Kenneth C. Crowe II, "Lawyers battle over appeal in deadly Troy police encounter," The Times Union, March 9, 2021.
    3. Brendan J. Lyons, "Federal judge rules jury should decide Thevenin case," The Times Union, September 6, 2019.
    4. Brendan J. Lyons, "Troy appeals judge's order that put fatal police shooting case on track for trial," The Times Union, September 25, 2019.
    5. Thevenin v. City of Troy, Court of Appeals Docket, Notes November 30, 2020, "Appellant Randall French replaced by Danielle French." (Requires a login)
    6. Elizabeth Press, "Interview with Laurie Shanks: Troy's Appeal of Thevenin Civil Rights Lawsuit Explained by Laurie Shanks," Hudson Mohawk Magazine, March 10, 2021.
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