Family hires high-profile attorney to sue Sacramento County

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The family of a man killed by sheriff's deputies is suing Sacramento County, and they just received some high-profile legal help.

Attorney Mark Geragos, famous for representing Michael Jackson, singer Chris Brown and Scott Peterson, is now representing the family of Dennis Dean. Dean was killed by sheriff's deputies after he was taken into custody in April 2012.

"Some days I don't even feel like leaving the house or anything," Dennis Dean, Sr. said. "I just get so depressed about the situation."

Two years after his son was killed during an arrest by Sacramento County sheriff's deputies, the father wants answers and justice.

"I just want it known that he was basically murdered in my opinion," Dennis Dean, Sr. said.

A $25 million lawsuit, filed by Dean's family against the county, claims deputies provoked a violent confrontation with Dennis Dean, then killed him execution style.

Deputies said after initially resisting, Dennis Dean was cooperating with a narcotics investigation when he accompanied officers into his bedroom to open a safe. That's when, deputies say, he somehow provoked them -- possibly reaching for a gun.

Attorneys for Sacramento County would not comment on the case, but in a 2012 interview, Sheriff Scott Jones insisted his deputies acted within the law.

"I am perfectly satisfied that at the moment each of those three officers fired their weapons, opted to use deadly force, felt compelled to use deadly force that they felt like they were in danger," Jones said in November 2012.

A coroner's report contained in the lawsuit reveals handcuffs around Dean's wrists and multiple gunshots to his back. An attorney with Geragos & Geragos said this was a key reason they decided to take the case -- a development Dennis Dean, Sr. finds encouraging.

"He's supposed to be really good, so I'm thinking maybe now we can find out what really happened, you know," Dennis Dean, Sr. said.

Attorney's for Sacramento County are trying to dismiss the case, something the Dean Family insists they will fight.


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