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Texas city, officer settle civil rights lawsuit in mistaken shooting of ex major leaguer’s son


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HOUSTON _ The family of an ex-major league baseball player whose son mistakenly was shot by a police sergeant outside their Houston-area home has settled a civil rights lawsuit against the city of Bellaire and the officer.

The $110,000 settlement was signed Tuesday as trial was to begin in Houston federal court in the case of Robert Tolan, son of former major leaguer Bobby Tolan.

Tolan’s family and a cousin sued Bellaire and Sgt. Jeffrey Cotton, alleging unconstitutional excessive force when the unarmed Tolan was shot on New Year’s Eve 2008 in front of the family home. Police mistakenly believed he was armed and had stolen a vehicle.

The suit also accused Bellaire and police of racial profiling, false arrest and racial harassment.

Tolan is black. The officer is white.

The Associated Press

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