LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The wife of Phillip Pitts, who was shot to death by a Las Vegas police officer two years ago, has filed a lawsuit against Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.
The suit was filed on behalf of Shondell Pitts and her 10-year-old daughter who were with Phillip Pitts when he was shot to death by police on Nov. 11, 2017. The shooting happened in the parking lot of a convenience store on Pyle Avenue near Maryland Parkway.
The lawsuit also names Sheriff Joe Lombardo, Officer David Nesheiwat, the FuelZone Mart, and a store clerk.
According to the lawsuit, Shondell Pitts was driving with her husband, Phillip, and daughter, when Phillip, who had been drinking and was armed with a gun, began assaulting her. She pulled into convenience store parking lot and ran into the store with her daughter. A clerk locked the door so Phillip couldn’t enter and police were called.
Before police arrived, the suit says, the clerk unlocked the door and Phillip entered the store and forced Shondell and their daughter outside.
According to the lawsuit, the first officer at the scene was negotiating with Phillips when a second officer arrived and shot four times. Three shots hit Phillip killing him. The other shot hit Shondell in the stomach.
Shondell Pitts is suing for emotional pain and suffering for herself and her child who witnessed the shooting.
A Police Fatality Fact-Finding Review was conducted after the shooting and it was determined the officer shot Phillip Pitts when he put the gun to his wife’s head. Metro Police even created a video for their YouTube channel calling Officer David Nesheiwat a hero for his actions that night. He also received a Medal of Valor from the department.
In the Clark County District Attorney’s report on the shooting, DA Steve Wolfson wrote:
“Mr. Pitts not only threatened to kill his wife and himself during this incident, but he endangered his 10 year-old daughter, who was with them as well.” There was a long history of unreported domestic violence in this family.”