Family of woman killed on Highway 212 sues the officer who shot her


The family of a woman who was fatally shot by police following a high-speed chase in the western suburbs last year filed a lawsuit against the officer who shot her.

On Feb. 7, 2014, Dawn Pfister, 34, and Matthew Serbus, 36, were fleeing police in a stolen car after being involved in a hit-and-run accident during morning rush-hour, investigators said. They crashed in Eden Prairie and Serbus emerged from the car with a knife he refused to drop, police said; Pfister then picked up the knife and she, too, was shot.

Officers involved in the shooting were cleared by a grand jury in December 2014, and Pfister's family vowed to fight the decision.

According to a federal lawsuit filed Monday against Chaska Police Sgt. Brady Juell and the City of Chaska, Pfister's family says the officer who shot her improperly used deadly force, FOX 9 reports. The suit claims she was no threat to police and had been reported as a "hostage" on scanner recordings, so she should not have been shot, the Star Tribune says.

"This is the most egregious use of deadly force that I've ever seen, and that includes viewing all the ones in Minnesota, and even the ones I looked at nationally," attorney Bob Bennett, who is representing the family, told FOX 9.

The lawsuit, which details the events leading up to the shooting, asks for more than $5 million, the Star Tribune reports, and demands uncut dash-cam video be released.

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