Families of Pulse Victims Sue Orlando Cop Hailed as a Hero
A tragedy like the Pulse massacre takes just seconds to unfold; yet survivors and families of victims have decided to sue an Orlando police officer, the officers he called for backup, and the city of Orlando over their interpretation of what occurred — and what could have been done — during those fleeting moments.
Police Respond to Pulse Shooting
A total of thirty-nine people affected by the Pulse massacre have filed a lawsuit against Adam Gruler, the first officer to respond to the nightclub shooting. Gruler, who was publicly recognized for his actions, had security duty at the club when the shooting took place. According to the police department’s account of events, he traded shots with the gunman from the parking lot after the shooting began. The officer realized he could not combat the shooter alone and called for additional support while the rampage continued.
Gruler, a long-time police officer, and his wife were both invited to the State of the Union address as guests after he received a valor award for his conduct. Some survivors and family members of victims, however, believe he didn’t do enough to protect victims.
Some Believe Orlando Police Could Have Done More to Prevent Massacre
The plaintiffs suing Gruler and others are doing so because they did not immediately enter the nightclub to neutralize the shooter, among other reasons. The lawsuit claims they chose “to remain safely outside” and allowed the shooter to fire freely at patrons.
The attorney representing the plaintiffs revealed that the civil rights lawsuit has been filed in federal court as a way to hold the city and its law enforcement accountable for their “actions and inactions at the time of the shooting.
Ten other police officers have also been accused of “unlawfully” arresting or detaining uninjured survivors after the shooting, treating them “like criminals” and preventing them from calling their families. Others have been accused of showing “callous indifference” when they arrived at Pulse as backup. The lawsuit claims that, while some officers did enter the club to engage with the shooter, they left and did not return to keep patrons safe.
The lawsuit also names the city of Orlando and the owners of Pulse as defendants.
It is impossible to know exactly how a person will react in an intense situation like a shooting; however, police have a duty to protect and serve citizens and as such, endure extensive training to respond to all kinds of unexpected and chaotic situations. Victims have every right to seek recourse from the city, the police force, and other entities tasked with protecting them. If a public entity has wronged you or someone you care about, you may have a valid basis for a lawsuit.
At The Umansky Law Firm, our Orlando personal injury lawyers provide personal attention to each case we receive to obtain the best outcome possible in court. We believe that survivors and victims’ families deserve to hold the parties responsible for protecting their loved ones accountable when they fail to uphold their duties. Contact our firm by calling our office for a free consultation.