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State of Washington Settles on Wrongful Death Claim

The Superior Court of the State of Washington oversaw the $100,000 settlement in February 2002 of a wrongful death claim brought by the wife of Dexter Villa, who was deceased in October 1998 as a result of the actions and inactions of the defendants. Plaintiff Melissa Malone averred that the shooting death of her husband by defendant Nathan Brightman was preventable had the state agencies involved done their jobs.

Defendant Brightman was under community control for a prior felony assault the time of the incident and in unlawful possession of a firearm. Defendant furthermore had been repeatedly reported to the county sheriff by neighbors alleging an array of crimes.

Plaintiff contended that the State of Washington with its underlying entities, the Department of Corrections, Pierce County, Washington, and the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office, were lawfully responsible for monitoring Brightman, preventing his possession of a firearm, and taking action on reports or other crimes that would have resulted in Brightman being incarcerated.

Plaintiff alleged negligence, carelessness and unlawfulness on the part of the State of Washington, and defendants so stipulated, settled with plaintiff.

See: Malone v. Brightman, Superior Court, State of Washington, 2-12-02, Case No. 01-2-12345-4.

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Related legal case

Malone v. Brightman

no case text.