Families of 5 killed in Indiana FedEx shooting file lawsuit

Apr 11, 2022, 11:23 AM | Updated: 1:46 pm
Attorneys Daniel Chamberlain, left, and Melvin Hewitt, Jr. announce a lawsuit in Indianapolis, Mond...

Attorneys Daniel Chamberlain, left, and Melvin Hewitt, Jr. announce a lawsuit in Indianapolis, Monday, April 11, 2022 on behalf of five families of the victims murdered in a mass shooting at the Indianapolis FedEx Ground facility on April 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Relatives of five of the eight people who were shot and killed last year at an Indianapolis FedEx warehouse by a former employee sued the shipping giant and a security company on Monday, accusing them of negligence and failing to ensure that the workplace was safe.

The federal lawsuit, which names as defendants the FedEx Corporation, three of its operating units and Securitas Security Services USA, alleges that gunman Brandon Scott Hole, 19, had “exhibited emotional and mental instability on multiple instances” before the April 15, 2021, shooting.

The suit contends the defendants “knew or should have known of Hole’s potentially violent and dangerous propensities, which were reasonably likely to result in injuries to himself and others.”

The families’ complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Indianapolis, seeks unspecified damages.

The plaintiffs are relatives of shooting victims Amarjeet Johal, 66; Amarjit Sekhon, 48; Jasvinder Kaur, 50; John Weisert, 74; and Karli Smith, 19.

The families of the three other people killed — Matthew R Alexander, 32; Samaria Blackwell, 19; and Jaswinder Singh, 68 — are not involved in the suit.

Johal’s youngest son, Gary Johal, said that hurt and pain remain ever-present for him and his relatives nearly a year after her death.

“It sucks that we have to go through this when this whole incident was 100% preventable,” he said at a news conference with two of the plaintiffs’ attorneys.

The suit alleges that FedEx should have taken additional security measures to protect the Indianapolis facility’s staff in light of previous mass shootings at other FedEx facilities, including an April 2014 shooting at a FedEx center in an Atlanta suburb where a gunman wounded six people.

After Hole arrived at the Indianapolis facility, he confronted Securitas security staff and “began banging on a door and causing a disturbance,” according to the lawsuit, which also contends the actions should have been recognized as those of a potentially dangerous person.

The suit accuses Securitas of failing to adequately train its staff to respond to dangerous or potentially dangerous situations, and failing to realize that Hole was “a potential threat.”

After he was denied entry to the building, the suit states, Hole returned to his car and opened fire minutes later in the parking lot and then at the facility’s entrance, killing the eight victims and wounding five other people.

“Obviously there wasn’t enough in place,” said Melvin L. Hewitt, one of the plaintiffs’ attorneys.. “It’s our position that it was an entirely preventable.”

FedEx said in a statement that it was aware of the lawsuit and was reviewing the allegations. The company added that it continues “to mourn the loss of our team members in the senseless tragedy.”

Securitas Security Services USA said it does not comment on pending litigation.

Indianapolis police and federal authorities said at a July 2021 news conference that Hole, a former FedEx employee, acted alone and used the attack as an act of “suicidal murder.” Four of the victims were Sikh, but authorities said the attack was not racially or ethnically motivated and that Hole believed he would “demonstrate his masculinity and capability” while fulfilling a final desire to experience killing people.

Hole was able to legally purchase the two rifles he used in the shooting, even after his mother called police in March of 2020 to say her son might attempt “suicide by cop.” Police seized a pump-action shotgun from Hole, then 18, when responding to his mother’s call.

Lawyers for the victims have said the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Marion County prosecutor’s office failed to follow Indiana’s red flag law when they decided not to file a case with the courts to suspend Hole’s gun rights in March of 2020.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

The National Labor Relations Board's top prosecutor, Jennifer Abruzzo, poses for a portrait at Nati...
Associated Press

NLRB’s top prosecutor seeks big changes, faces uphill battle

As workers at major companies increasingly move to unionize, the political environment for labor couldn’t be more ripe. Perhaps nowhere is that more accurate than at the National Labor Relations Board, the agency that enforces the country’s labor laws and oversees union elections. In the past year, the Biden-appointed top prosecutor Jennifer Abruzzo has been […]
8 hours ago
Associated Press

Off-duty officer charged with assault at abortion protest

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island police officer accused of punching a woman at an abortion protest while he was off-duty has now been charged in connection with Friday’s demonstration at the State House. In a Saturday evening news release, state police said Providence patrolman Jeann Lugo, 35, was charged with simple assault and […]
8 hours ago
Associated Press

Iran launches rocket into space as nuclear talks to resume

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian state television said Sunday that Tehran had launched a solid-fueled rocket into space, drawing a rebuke from Washington ahead of the expected resumption of stalled talks over Tehran’s tattered nuclear deal with world powers. It’s unclear when or where exactly the rocket was launched, but the announcement came after satellite […]
8 hours ago
FILE - Wallace Reid purchases fuel for the vehicle he drives to make a living using ride-share apps...
Associated Press

Greedflation: Is price-gouging helping fuel high inflation?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Furious about surging prices at the gasoline station and the supermarket, many consumers feel they know just where to cast blame: On greedy companies that relentlessly jack up prices and pocket the profits. Responding to that sentiment, the Democratic-led House of Representatives last month passed on a party-line vote — most Democrats […]
8 hours ago
FILE - Wallace Reid purchases fuel for the vehicle he drives to make a living using ride-share apps...
Associated Press

Did corporate greed fuel inflation? It’s not biggest culprit

WASHINGTON (AP) — Furious about surging prices at the gasoline station and the supermarket, many consumers feel they know just where to cast blame: On greedy companies that relentlessly jack up prices and pocket the profits. Responding to that sentiment, the Democratic-led House of Representatives last month passed on a party-line vote — most Democrats […]
8 hours ago
Gabby Giffords, center, the subject of the documentary film "Gabby Giffords Won't Back Down," poses...
Associated Press

Giffords documentary comes as gun debates stay center stage

In the two years documentary filmmakers shadowed former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, the most jarring moment for them was in the kitchen of her Tucson, Arizona, home. As cameras were rolling, she and her husband, Sen. Mark Kelly, nonchalantly opened the freezer. Kelly grabbed a plastic container and revealed it holds the piece of Giffords’ skull […]
8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Most plumbing problems can be fixed with regular maintenance

Instead of waiting for a problem to happen, experts suggest getting a head start on your plumbing maintenance.
...
Arizona Division of Problem Gambling

Arizona Division of Problem Gambling provides exclusion solution for young sports bettors

Sports betting in Arizona opened a new world to young adults, one where putting down money on games was as easy as sending a text message.
...
Canvas Annuity

The secret to guaranteed retirement income

Annuities aren’t really a secret, but they are so misunderstood that they might as well be. Once you understand what an annuity is and how it can benefit you, you could decide this “secret” is the perfect supplement to your retirement plan.
Families of 5 killed in Indiana FedEx shooting file lawsuit