The family of a man who was run over and killed allegedly by Marion “Suge” Knight, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the former rapper. According to a City News Service report, Knight, 50, has been charged with one count each of murder, attempted murder and hit-and-run for allegedly killing 55-year-old Terry Carter and injuring Cle “Bone” Sloan January 29, 2015 with his pickup in Los Angeles.
Knight remains jailed.
Lawsuit Alleges Negligence & Recklessness
Carter’s family has sued Knight along with Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Sloan and Universal Studios, seeking unspecified damages. The lawsuit contends that the producers of a film called “Straight Outta Compton” hired known gang members to provide security for location shoots for the film and promotional materials for the production, which focuses on the emergence of the rap group N.W.A.
The lawsuit alleges that the gang members threatened Knight leading to the confrontation that left Carter dead. The lawsuit has been filed by Carter’s wife, Lillian, on behalf of herself and their two daughters. The suit alleges negligence on the part of Knight when he drove his vehicle toward Carter and Sloan.
Murder Versus Wrongful Death
There is a significant difference between murder and wrongful death. Wrongful death lawsuits are a civil action usually brought forth by the estate or family members of the deceased with the help of a wrongful death lawyer. Such lawsuits usually claim, as in this case, that the defendant or defendants are responsible for the deceased person’s death through a careless, deliberate or negligent act. Civil lawsuits carry a different burden of proof than criminal cases and the burden of proof is on the plaintiff. Also, in a civil suit, proof by 51 percent or more is considered acceptable.
In criminal cases, the burden of proof is on the prosecution and the prosecutor must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The penalty in a criminal case is incarceration or the death penalty.
But, in a civil case, the defendant is ordered to pay monetary damages to the plaintiffs. It is important to remember that a criminal conviction will not provide victims’ families with monetary compensation even though they may get some court-ordered restitution. A death often affects a family emotionally and financially.
An experienced Los Angeles wrongful death attorney can help affected families recover fair and full compensation for their significant losses.