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Former Taco Bell manager to sue city in shooting

By Staff | Nov 10, 2008

A former Taco Bell manager who was shot by a police officer in February will sue the city of Cape Coral, according to his lawyer.

Paul Price was shot in the abdomen by officer Doug Coons during a police stakeout of the Taco Bell at 11 Hancock Bridge Parkway where Price worked. The stakeout was reportedly based on information the Cape police department had received about a possible robbery at one of the local Taco Bell stores the night of Feb. 26.

Christopher Ward and three others attempted a robbery on the store.

Coons shot Ward in the shoulder, who had entered the store and taken Price hostage at gunpoint, and also shot Price, according to police documents.

Price’s lawyers of the law firm Lusk, Drasites, Tolisano & Smith filed an intention to sue the city in March for Price’s injury, which they called “a direct result of the negligence of the Cape Coral Police Department.”

“We gave (the city) six months to make some kind of settlement,” said Domenic Valentine, a lawyer representing Price. “They chose not to. We filed suit.”

Valentine said the personal injury suit was filed earlier this month. He said Price would seek the maximum amount of $100,000 allowed under the sovereign immunity cap.

“When it comes to pending litigation, our policy is not to comment,” said city spokesperson Connie Barron.

Coons was cleared of procedural and criminal wrongdoing by the CCPD and the State Attorney’s Office in May.

Ward was charged with robbery as a result of the February incident. Monique Bryant, Crystal Colon and Andy Garcia were also charged in the robbery attempt.