Emantic Bradford Jr.

Federal lawsuit filed a year after cop shoots & kills Army veteran misidentified as mall gunman

A year later, bodycam footage depicting Emantic Bradford Jr.’s controversial shooting death remains unreleased to the public

A federal civil rights lawsuit will be filed a year after an Alabama police officer reportedly shot and killed a bystander during an altercation at an Alabama mall.

Last Thanksgiving, an unidentified Hoover police officer fatally shot Emantic Bradford Jr., 21, at the Riverchase Galleria Mall. Bradford was present when Erron Brown, 20, allegedly shot Bradford’s 18-year-old friend in the stomach and wounded a 12-year-old bystander.

The officer on duty at the mall at the time shot Bradford dead seconds after gunfire erupted. In his statement, the officer said the “suspect was advancing on the two males and had a black handgun in his right hand” and that he was unable to issue verbal commands before firing and striking Bradford.

How do you protect your children from predators? Join Nancy Grace and a team of world-class experts for the online course ‘Justice Nation: Crime Stops Here’.

Alongside Emantic Bradford Jr.’s family on Friday, civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump announced that a wrongful death lawsuit will be filed against the unidentified Hoover police officer who killed Bradford in addition to the city.

Crump previously said Bradford was an honorably discharged Army veteran, legal gun owner, and had no criminal record. He also claimed that Bradford was running away from the scene until he realized that his friend was in trouble and brandished his legal gun.

A private autopsy reportedly revealed that Bradford was shot in the neck, back, and head and that all three bullets entered from behind.

Despite this, prosecutors announced in February that they will not be filing criminal charges against the officer. In their report, they found the officer’s actions were “reasonable” and “consistent” for active shooting situations.

“We want change because Thanksgiving is coming up next week and that mall is likely to be packed again,” Crump said on Friday, according to WTVM.

“Will the police employ policies and procedures that are in accordance with trying to prevent the killing, unnecessarily, of innocent people? Will they give verbal commands or will they just shoot into crowds? We pray that the change is going to come about because E.J. Bradford’s legacy demands that change.”

For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast.

Join Nancy Grace for her new online video series designed to help you protect what you love most – your children.

[Feature Photo: Emantic Bradford Jr./Handout]