USA Chief has Little to Say 18 Months after Shooting - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

USA Chief has Little to Say 18 Months after Shooting

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A hearing scheduled for tomorrow in the lawsuit against a South Alabama campus police officer has been postponed for a week. Officer Tevis Austin is the only remaining defendant in a suit brought by the family of Gil Collar – an 18-year-old freshman shot-and-killed by Austin on campus in October, 2012.

Today on campus, South Alabama campus police handed out coffee and doughnuts to students. Called “Coffee with a Cop,” the idea is to improve interaction between police and students, a relationship at USA that’s been strained since the shooting death of Collar.

The naked and apparently drug addled Collar was shot by Officer Tevis Austin who said Collar lunged to get his weapon.

Austin is still on the job, and was on hand today at the coffee and doughnuts event. He remains subject of a lawsuit by the Collar family. Litigation against the university and against Chief Zeke Aull for not properly equipping and training officers has been thrown out.

Today was the first opportunity media has had to interview Aull since the Collar shooting. The Chief, though, would not talk about the incident.

"We’re not going to talk about it," said Aull. "That's not just a subject we can broach here."

Aull refused to say if officers are now equipped with tasers, although it appeared that they are not. The Collar family contends officers should have an intermediate force weapon, like tasers, to use in less serious situations..
A News-Five Investigation last year revealed about half of college campus in the southeast equip their officers with tasers.

Lawsuits against the USA and Aull were dismissed because as official agents of the state… they are protected against litigation.

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