The parents of Los Angeles Police Department officer, Houston Tipping, believe that the spinal injuries that eventually led to his death were the result of intentional acts during a training exercise with his fellow officers.
They have filed a wrongful death lawsuit for the death of the Los Angeles police officer to pursue compensation for their loss and justice for the loss of their beloved son.
The mother of an LAPD officer who passed away after suffering significant injuries in a role-playing training exercise at the LAPD academy has initiated a wrongful death claim. Her attorney Brad Gage also believes that Officer Tipping was injured intentionally.
This lawsuit, which builds on a previous legal claim made earlier this year, alleged that there are signs that at least one other officer in the group purposefully injured Officer Houston Tipping.
The suit also claims that recently obtained medical documentation demonstrates that the medical device alleged to have caused his broken ribs was there during treatment but was never utilized. This contradicts the claims made by the LAPD that it caused Tipping’s broken ribs.
In a report Officer Tipping submitted while employed at the Devonshire station, Tipping accused the student officer who would later cause his injuries of sexually assaulting a woman.
According to Gage, the grappling-style training exercise in the class may have provided the perfect opportunity for Tipping to be attacked by the trainee officer, who may have been inspired by the report of his misconduct to seek revenge.
Officer Tipping was assaulted on May 26, 2022, when, according to Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michel Moore, the other officer—whose identity has been concealed — wrapped an arm around Officer Tipping’s neck as both of them fell to the ground.
Moore told the City Police Commission that his neck was injured as the officer fell to the floor. Unfortunately, Officer Tipping succumbed to his injuries a week later after receiving treatment at a hospital.
Tipping’s death was deemed to be the result of a “horrible accident” as he and another trainee officer fell to the ground while conducting a training activity, according to a report that was recently issued by the Los Angeles Police Department’s Office of Constitutional Policing and Policy.
Upon the publication of the findings, Lizabeth Rhodes, the director of the department, informed the City Police Commission that he had passed away while participating in a one-on-one activity.
She stated in no uncertain terms that the tragic death of Officer Tipping had nothing to do with the other LAPD officers involved and was purely the result of an accident that occurred while Officer Tipping’s neck remained in the student officer’s arm.
Rhodes gave an example of Tipping acting as the suspect and attacking the trainee LAPD officer violently. The trainee LAPD officer eventually hit Tipping in the leg using a foam baton. Tipping responded like he was intended to in this situation by getting down his knee to imitate a successful baton strike,” even though the strike did not result in any injuries.
After that, she claimed, Tipping re-engaged the student officer.
According to Rhodes, the trainee officer’s arm wrapped around Tipping’s neck, extending toward the front of his throat and neck. Officer Tipping’s neck was still in that hold when the two dropped to the ground.
This led to many first-aid attempts while medics were summoned.
Moreover, she explained that both the department and the coroner’s office concluded that this was fatal but an unintentional accident.
Rhodes also stated that there was no proof to support the claim that Tipping died because he was assaulted by several other LAPD officers in an effort to imitate a mob.
Officer Tipping sustained an injury to his cervical spinal cord while performing a training exercise, according to the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office, which ruled his fatal injuries accidental.
The wrongful death lawsuit claimed that Tipping’s injuries, which included shattered cervical vertebrae and broken ribs, were much more severe than would be anticipated from a fall to the ground during a grappling action.
Moreover, the family’s attorney said that other than an intentional attack, there isn’t any other rational explanation for the severity of the Los Angeles Police Officer’s injuries, even though the Coroner’s Office determined that his death was accidental.
In Los Angeles, the immediate family of the bereaved has two years in which to file a wrongful death lawsuit. If your loved one was injured like this LAPD officer and no justice has been provided, you can hold the at-fault party responsible by filing a wrongful death claim.
The truth is that cases like these can be challenging without the proper legal representation. As you have seen, the family of this LAPD officer had an unwavering attorney ready to fight for the family’s rights.
If you feel your loved one was wronged, it’s important to get legal advice to find out whether you can file a lawsuit.
Michael is a managing partner at the nationwide Ehline Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC. He’s an inactive Marine and became a lawyer in the California State Bar Law Office Study Program, later receiving his J.D. from UWLA School of Law. Michael has won some of the world’s largest motorcycle accident settlements.