Family of man shot and killed by Mesa police in 2016 settles for $8 million

The family of Daniel Shaver will receive $8 million from the city following the 2016 death of Shaver, who was shot five times, including in the back.
Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 9:25 AM MST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5/AP) -- The City of Mesa has reached an $8 million settlement with the family of Daniel Shaver, who was shot five times, including to his back, during a 2016 encounter at a La Quinta Inn & Suites hotel in Mesa.

“While this settlement helps Daniel’s widow and children with the financial stability to move forward, it does not erase the cruelty of his killing, or the malicious campaign by the Mesa Police Department—orchestrated and implemented by their attorneys for over 6 years of needless, malevolent scorched-earth litigation,” said Laney Sweet, Shaver’s widow.

Shaky body-camera footage taken during that Jan. 18, 2016 call revealed the encounter ended with Officer Philip Brailsford fatally shooting Shaver.

According to the Associated Press, the video shows Brailsford and other officers getting into a hotel elevator, listening to a sergeant’s voice a plan for getting Shaver and a woman out of the room, and waiting for several minutes as their calls for the pair to come out went unanswered.

Shaver was shot as he laid on the ground outside his room. Officers say they believed Shaver, who pleaded with officers not to kill him, was reaching for a gun. Shaver wasn’t armed but had pellet guns in his room as part of his pest-control job.

Brailsford was later fired for violating departmental policies and a jury acquitted him of second-degree murder. Sweet filed a lawsuit in 2017 seeking $75 million in damages, alleging Shaver had not provoked the killing, and the event could have been avoided if officers had investigated more.

Soon afterward, the U.S. Department of Justice opened a civil-rights violation investigation against Brailsford. The Mesa Police Department in March 2018, said the DOJ had subpoenaed the department for all documents about the January 2016 shooting. Results from that investigation have not been released.

The Associated Press contributed to this report through prior coverage.