This week the City of Lubbock denied any civil rights violations when Lubbock Police Officer Billy Mitchell shot and injured Paul Anthony Valderas.
Valeras filed a $20 million lawsuit against the city in late October.
Police acknowledged in January officers were closing in on Valderas to make an arrest. He was suspected of narcotics violations and he was later charged with being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.
Police said he displayed a gun. Valderas claims he “clearly disarmed himself” when he was shot. The lawsuit says Valderas is now permanently paralyzed from the chest down.
Both Mitchell and the city filed a written response this week in court records.
“[The City of Lubbock] affirmatively asserts that the actions of Officer Billy Mitchell were lawful and did not constitute excessive force under the circumstances,” the city wrote in court records.
“The police officers of the City, including Officer Mitchell, had knowledge that [Valderas] was a convicted felon and was known to be armed at all times,” the city said. “Officer Mitchell reasonably perceived that [Valderas], in pulling the firearm, was going to fire it…”
“Officer Mitchell was justified in using deadly force under the totality of the circumstances presented to him,” the city said.
Mitchell’s written response was similar to the city’s.