Former Tucson officer who fatally shot man on motorized scooter won't face charges

Published: Wednesday, January 18, 2023 - 11:33am

A Pima County judge has dismissed the criminal case against a former Tucson police officer who shot and killed a man using a motorized scooter.

In November 2021, former TPD officer Ryan Remington was fired from the department after video footage showed him firing nine shots at Richard Lee Richards during an encounter in front of a Lowe's Home Improvement store.

According to a TPD statement released at the time, Remington was off duty from the police department that night, but responded to a call from an employee at the Walmart next to Lowe's, who said Richards had stolen a toolbox. The statement said Remington fired shots after Richards refused to stop and drop a knife he held. Richards was pronounced dead on the scene. 

Remington was indicted on manslaughter charges by a grand jury in Tucson last August. But the case was sent back to court at the request of Remington's lawyers, who argued the prosecution had misled jurors. A new grand jury heard the case in December and declined to indict.

On Tuesday, Pima County Superior Judge Casey McGinley ruled to dismiss the case without prejudice, following the grand jury's new decision. A small crowd of protesters gathered outside the courthouse that morning, including Victoria Richards, who said she’ll keep looking for justice for her slain brother.

"When there’s been a crime committed, somebody needs to pay for it. And I firmly believe this man committed a crime, he didn’t have a right to shoot my brother," she said. "I really just do not feel he was justified in shooting him, at the point that he shot him. He walked beside him for ten minutes and talked to him, my brother was mentally and physically disabled, not just physically."

Richards says also filed a civil case against the city of Tucson and Remington over her brother's death. She said the case will move forward in February. 

As KGUN reports, the Pima County Attorney’s Office can decide to pursue a new case, but as KGUN reports, it's not yet clear if the office will.

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