Parents of 16-year-old shot in back by Colorado prisons employee file lawsuit

The parents of a 16-year-old who was shot in the back while running through backyards in Montbello to flee police sued the Colorado Department of Corrections officer who killed their son.

Andy Munoz, a second teenager shot, joined the parents of Alexis Mendez-Perez in their wrongful death lawsuit against Desmond Manning, the off-duty corrections officer, who fired the shots. Amanda Perez-Sinaloa and Concepcion Mendez are asking a Denver District Court judge to order Manning to pay for the medical and funeral costs as well as an unspecified amount because of the anguish they suffered when their son was killed, according to the lawsuit filed Thursday. Munoz also is asking for an unspecified amount in damages.

Mendez-Perez and Munoz were shot after 1:47 a.m., April 23 after police arrived to break up a party being held in a vacant home in the 14000 block of East 51st Place. Manning’s wife had called 911 to report a break-in at the neighboring house, and he took a .40-caliber Glock handgun from a lockbox before locking his doors and windows, the lawsuit said.

After police arrived, Manning sat on his back porch to watch the scene unfold. As the boys climbed the vacant house’s fence, Manning turned on his porch light and came back outside. He fired five shots as they ran through his yard, striking Mendez-Perez in the back, causing a bullet to tear through his right lung. A bullet hit Munoz in the back of his left leg, the lawsuit says.

After the shooting, Denver police arrested Manning on suspicion of second-degree murder. But Denver District Attorney Beth McCann announced in June that she would not file criminal charges against him, saying there wasn’t enough evidence to prove he wasn’t acting in self defense to find him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

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