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Show them the money!

Ralph Yarl

Source: Family / Ben Crump

Last year, in Kansas City, Missouri, angry, violent, and probably racist white man Andrew Lester shot then-16-year-old Ralph Yarl in the head and in the arm for no discernable reason after the Black teen rang his doorbell after going to the wrong house to pick up his younger brothers. Lester has since been charged with first-degree assault and armed criminal action, which he has pleaded not guilty to, and, now, he’s also facing a civil lawsuit filed by Ralph’s mother, Cleopatra Nagbe.

The lawsuit, which accuses Lester of “carelessly and negligently” failing to communicate or “give audible warning” to Yarl before firing shots at him, seeks financial compensation “in excess of this Court’s jurisdictional limit,” as well as the cost of legal fees, according to ABC News.

Not only is Lester, 85, named in the suit, but so is Highland Acres Homes Association, which the suit alleges “carelessly and negligently” failed to communicate regulations on firearm safety and “failed to render aid” to Ralph after he was shot. According to CNN, the suit also alleges that the HOA “was aware of or should have been aware of Defendant, Andrew Lester’s, propensity for violence, access to dangerous weapons and racial animus.”

As previously reported, Lester shot Ralph after the teen rang his doorbell looking for his brothers.  Lester told police he “believed someone was attempting to break into the house,” which is wild considering that he was awakened by the doorbell and a home intruder ringing the bell would be like someone shouting, “SUPRISE ATTACK,” before pouncing on a person from the shadows.

In fact, as ABC noted, Lester even told the police that he “shot twice within a few seconds of opening the door,” which, in a perfect world, would be a pretty damning confession that Lester saw a Black person at his door and took a shoot first, ask questions never approach to handling the non-situation. After all, it should be noted that Lester shot Ralph in the head and then shot him again in the arm as the teen ran away.

“Ralph is slowly coming to terms with what happened,” his mother told ABC. “In the beginning, his way of dealing with it was minimizing … but trauma catches up with you. So the trauma has fallen away to catch up with him.”

According to the suit, Ralph “suffered and sustained permanent injuries, endured pain and suffering of a temporary and permanent nature, experienced disability and losses of normal life activities, was obligated to spend large sums of money for medical care and attention and suffered other losses and damages.” Nagbe noted that his “recovery has been really long” and “is still ongoing,” and that his injuries have affected his ability to do school work, among other things.

“That’s why I feel bad for him,” she said. “But he doesn’t see that there has been a shift in his mental capacity. It’s not that he’s less smarter, it’s just that when the brain wants to heal, the brain wants to heal. It focuses everything on that healing.”

While Ralph continues his journey to recovery, Lester has been out of jail on bond for more than a year and his criminal trial is set to begin on Oct. 7.





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