The mother of a St Louis police officer who was killed by her police boyfriend during a game of Russian roulette says in a wrongful death lawsuit filed Wednesday that Nathaniel Hendren forced other girlfriends to play similar games and had serious psychiatric issues the St Louis Police Department should have known about, the St Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
In addition to Hendren, the suit filed by Aimee L. Wahlers names Hendren’s partner Patrick Riordan, who was present at Hendren’s home when the shooting took place; their sergeant Gary Foster; and the city of St. Louis.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Hendren was charged with involuntary manslaughter for the January 24 shooting death of 24-year-old off-duty officer Katlyn Alix. Hendren and Riordan were both on duty at the time and had been drinking, according to a disciplinary document obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Reports at the time said that both Hendren and Alix had previously pulled the trigger on the gun that killed Alix, and those times the weapon did not fire a bullet.
Hendren pleaded not guilty in April. Riordan has not been charged with a crime. Wahlers’ lawsuit, however, claims that Riordan watched what was going on and did nothing to stop it.
According to the Post-Dispatch, the lawsuit says that witnesses heard a screaming fight between a man and a woman before the gunshots. The suit alleges that Hendren had forced other girlfriends to play a roulette like game and engaged in sex play involving firearms. The lawsuit also alleges that Hendren had well-documented psychiatric troubles, including anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and “suicidal ideations and gestures.”
Hendren’s attorney, Talmage Newton IV, said he’d only just received a copy of the lawsuit and had found “all sorts of inaccuracies and misstatements.” “It’s not precise,” he said, without detailing any imprecisions.
Wahlers’ lawsuit did not mention that Alix is also believed to have pulled the trigger on the gun, but it did note that she “was off duty, was intoxicated and vulnerable.”
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[Feature image: Katlyn Alix/St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department]