Thursday, February 28, 2013

Stephanie Lazarus Case: Rasmussen Family Civil Suit

Photo © Loretta Rasmussen; used with permission.
Left to right: Teresa Lane, Nels Rasmussen, Sherri Rae Rasmussen, 
Loretta Rasmussen, Connie Rasmussen, on November 23rd, 1985, Sherri's wedding.

UPDATED 3//2 spelling, clarity, new link
On February 20th, 2013, the California Supreme Court declined the Rasmussen family's petition to review the lower court's decision in their civil suit against the LAPD

Here is the LA Times story on the decision.

In 2010, the Rasmussen's sued the LAPD for violation of civil rights, wrongful death, intentional infliction of emotional distress and fraudulent concealment.

On Tuesday, I spoke to the Rasmussen family attorney, John Taylor, to find out what's next for the Rasmussen family.

T&T: Is this the end of the road for the Rasmussen family's lawsuit?

JT: No.

T&T: Are there any future appeals planned?

JT: The appeals for this specific lawsuit are over.  We're exploring other avenues of legal recourse.

T&T: How did Nels Rasmussen take the news?

JT: They're disappointed.  The Court of Appeal said that they should have brought an action [against the LAPD] by 1998.  If they had brought a lawsuit in 1998, what would the lawsuit have beenWhat specific charge could they have made? It wasn't until Stephanie's arrest in June 2009 that the family's suspicions were confirmed.

T&T: You told the Los Angeles Times that the LAPD promised a full investigation into what went wrong in 1986.  Who made that promise?

JT: Several people within the LAPD.  More than one person, on more than one occasion, assured the Rasmussen family that there would be an investigation into the handling of the case in 1986.  As of today, we're not aware of any investigation into the handling of the case at the time of the murder.  The LAPD owes it to the Rasmussen family.  And also, you'd think they would do it for the future, to find out what went wrong so no other family would go through what these people did.

Twenty-seven years ago this past Sunday, February 24th, Sherri Rae Rasmussen was murdered by Stephanie Lazarus.  T&T will continue to follow any future developments in this case.

Initial Appellate Court Decision


Soapbubble said...

That is a really crappy way to treat this family. How could they have filed a suit when the case wasn't 'solved' until 2009?

Anonymous said...

What a Catch-22 situation! Totally sucks for the Rasmussens. At least psycho Steph is in the pen, most likely for life.

US_DOJ_Gov said...

This is DISGUSTING on part of the City of Los Angeles & LAPD.

I would hope the City of Los Angeles & LAPD would pay-out the Rasmussen's claim without conflict.

CRASH/ Rampart scandal had many inmates exiting Dept. of Corrections after serving several years due to LAPD officers fabricating evidence.
City of Los Angeles paid out over $125 million in those claims.