Mom sues ex-correctional officer over road-rage killing of her son
Sun-Times Media Wire July 22, 2014 8:54PM
Updated: August 24, 2014 6:43AM
CHICAGO — The mother of a Northwest Indiana man fatally shot during a road rage confrontation in 2013 is suing the former correctional officer convicted of killing her son, as well as the Cook County Sheriff’s office.
Adrienne Moss filed the wrongful death lawsuit Tuesday in Cook County Circuit Court on behalf of her son, Montrell Moss, and his passenger, Shimeka Robinson.
About 8 p.m. Aug. 8, 2013, former Cook County Jail correctional officer Edgar Singleton Jr. fatally shot 23-year-old Montrell Moss, as they were driving near Indianapolis Boulevard and Casino Center Drive in Hammond, according to the lawsuit and previous Chicago Sun-Times reports.
Singleton and Montrell Moss “exchanged words through the open windows of their vehicles while both were stopped at a stop light,” the suit claims.
According to previous reports, Montrell Moss was unarmed, and threw a fast-food cup at Singleton’s van because Singleton had cut him off twice in traffic.
Singleton “perceived a threat to his safety,” drew his sheriff-issued gun and fired a single shot that struck Montrell Moss in the neck, the suit claims. Robinson was not injured.
During the shooting, Singleton was wearing his Cook County Sheriff’s office Department of Corrections uniform, the lawsuit alleges.
Montrell Moss, of the 3800 block of Butternut Street in East Chicago, was pronounced dead at 8:50 p.m. at Franciscan St. Margaret Health in Hammond, according to the Lake County Coroner’s office. His death was ruled a homicide.
Singleton, 62, of Chicago, was convicted of first-degree murder following a jury trial and sentenced in March 2014 to 50 years in prison. Jurors rejected his attorney’s self-defense claim that Montrell Moss was reaching for a gun, the Sun-Times reported previously.
“There was no lawful cause or justification for the use of lethal force,” the lawsuit claims.
Tuesday’s lawsuit also alleges the sheriff’s office failed to properly train and instruct its employees in the proper use of force and, among other things, should have known of Singleton’s reckless or dangerous propensities.
“While we have not had an opportunity to review the lawsuit, it was a tragedy committed by a former employee who has since been convicted of the crime,” said Sophia Ansari, spokeswoman for the Cook County Sheriff’s office.
The seven-count lawsuit claims wrongful death, excessive force and battery, among other things. It also seeks to hold the county responsible and asks for an unspecified amount in damages.