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Jury awards Ellis family more than $10 million

Updated: 03/27/2014 5:56 PM | Created: 03/15/2013 6:46 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The verdict was a bittersweet end for the family of Kenneth Ellis III to a three year courtroom battle they believe will go down in history.

“As large as it was, I don't know that I expected that until it started and the trial was that, I don't think any of us knew it was going to be a city, community changing event,” Ellis’ mother Anelle Wharton said.

The jury ruled the city was negligent in keeping Officer Brett Lampiris-Tremba, who shot and killed Ellis, on the force, and that he was willful and reckless in shooting Ellis.

“We're going to continue to push and make sure our citizens are safe from our police department,” Ellis’ sister Krissy Encinio said.

The jury said the city also negligently supervised Lampiris-Tremba and that his actions violated Ellis’ constitutional rights. Ellis’ family said it shows the need for change, which they plan to be a part of.

“We definitely need some people with integrity running this city,” Ellis’ sister Jonelle Ellis said, “And maybe a little bit of resignation from Mr. Berry because he doesn't seem to hold anybody else accountable either. We're not done, we're not done at all.

The jury ruled:

  • City must pay Kenneth Ellis III more than 7.6 million dollars.
  • Officer Brett Lampiris-Tremba, who shot and killed Ellis, owes more than 2.7 million dollars.
  • Lampiris-Tremba was willfull and reckless in shooting.
  • -Officer Trey Economidy did NOT violate Kenneth Ellis III’s constitutional right involving search and seizure.
  • Officer Trey Economidy DID violate Kenneth Ellis III’s constitutional right to be free from excessive force.
  • The city of Albuquerque did NOT negligently hire Officer Brett Lampiris-Tremba.
  • The city of Albuquerque DID negligently retain Lampiris-Tremba.
  • The city’s negligent retention of Lampiris-Tremba DID cause a violation of Ellis’ constitutional rights.
  • The city DID negligently supervise Lampiris-Tremba.
  • The city did NOT negligently supervise Economidy.

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