Attorney finalizes $10M Beaver death lawsuit - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Attorney finalizes $10M Beaver death lawsuit

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August 9, 2005

Dawson -- A Lee County family plans to file a ten million dollar federal lawsuit against Lee County, it's sheriff, and former Deputy Donnie Spillers. The wrongful death suit also claims there is a pattern of illegal activity within the sheriff's department.

Attorney Wilbur Gamble the Third is putting the finishing touches on the Beaver Family's ten million dollar lawsuit against Lee County.

Gamble said "I don't think there is much question that Lee County and the Sheriff's department and Sheriff Breeden and Donnie Spillers should be liable for what's happened."

Seventeen-year-old Wesley Beaver was shot by Lee County Deputy Donnie Spillers February 14th, following a car chase on U.S. 19. Beaver died the next day.

Spillers was fired by the Sheriff's Office, and charged criminally with involuntary manslaughter. "He did not follow any of the police procedure that should have been followed," Gamble said. "He had no provocation, no reason to have shot Wesley Beaver."

The Beaver family's lawsuit will include a RICO provision, charging the Lee County Sheriff and his officers with engaging in a pattern of illegal activities.

"Illegal stops. Planting of drugs. In one case down in Moultrie in which Donnie Spillers went down there and performed some illegal activities," Gamble said.

If the jury finds in the Beaver family's favor, the RICO provision would triple any damage awards. But Gamble says millions of dollars will not help the Beaver family's grief. "Nope, that won't do it. But it's the only legal way we've got to get justice in this particular case."

Gamble plans to file the lawsuit Wednesday, but says it probably will be more than one year to be heard if the case goes to court.Last week Donnie Spillers plead not guilty to all the criminal charges brought against him in Lee County Superior Court.

Sheriff Breeden said he could not comment on the lawsuit, because of the advice of the County Attorney.

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