The family of Andrew Finch has decided they want charges brought against the Wichita, Kansas police officer who shot and killed the 28-year-old following a swatting prank.
While many have focused on the initial shooting, some of the civil rights violations that occurred following the shooting have been ignored. Currently, there is a hold on Finch’s body preventing the family from beginning any funeral arrangements.
After Finch was shot, his family was detained while police searched the family’s house for hours, they were not allowed to follow Finch to the hospital. His 17-year-old niece was forced to step over Finch as he lay dying and his aunt was tackled inside the house by three officers.
Finch’s mother, Lisa Finch, claims that the Wichita Police Department took her personal laptop, two cell phones, and her car key as evidence. Police also removed the front screen door Finch opened just moments before an officer fired one round and killed him.
Days after the shooting, Lisa claims Chief Gordon Ramsey stopped by her residence to offer condolences and asked if she would like to watch the video with him. Ramsey was not able to give answers to the many questions Lisa has, nor was he able to tell her when her son’s body or her personal property would be released.
In a letter to Mayor Jeff Longwell, Ramsey, and other city officials, Lisa said Ramsey’s unannounced visit did not provide the family any closer following the tragic situation. The letter also requested information on protocol and training for officers responding to related calls. Longwell and Ramsey have yet to make a public comment about the shooting.
It goes without saying that our family is devastated by what has happened. What cannot go without saying is why Wichita City leadership is compounding our grief and sorrow, by keeping my son from us? Please let me see my son’s lifeless body. I want to hold him and say goodbye. Please immediately return his body to us.
The family’s Chicago-based civil rights attorney Andrew M. Stroth told the Associated Press on Tuesday night the swatter’s actions were inappropriate and tragic, but his actions should not allow the WPD to not be held accountable for their actions.
Justice for the Finch family constitutes criminal charges against the shooting officer and any other liable officers as well as damages against the city of Wichita for the policies and practices of its Police Department.
On Thursday evening, a well-known Internet prank turned deadly after police in Wichita, Kansas responded to a call claiming a man had killed his father and was holding his family hostage.
Police responded to the call, which ended with the shooting death of 28-year-old Andrew Thomas Finch. In a media briefing, Wichita Police Department Deputy Chief Troy Livingston stated they believe they were “given some misinformation on the call.” Finch did not murder his father, and there were no hostages at the residence.
During the media briefing, Livingston confirmed that Finch did not fire at officers. When asked if Finch was armed, there was no answer. It was said there will be more information released at Friday’s media briefing at 10:00 am.