Slain USA student Gil Collar's family files lawsuit - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Slain USA student Gil Collar's family files lawsuit


The family of slain University of South Alabama freshman Gil Collar is filing a wrongful death suit against the university and two of its police officers. The suit was announced Monday afternoon by the Beasley Allen law firm of Montgomery. The university had no comment.

Named in the suit are the University of South Alabama and officers Trevis Austin and Zeke Aull. Lawyers for Collar's parents say the shooting by officer Austin was not justified.

According to witnesses, Collar, an 18-year-old Wetumpka native, was nude, sweating profusely and acting erratically the night of October 6 when the officers heard him outside the campus police station.

Investigators say Collar had taken LSD at a music festival that day and was in the middle of a "drug-induced meltdown" when he showed up at the station and started banging on the glass. WPMI-TV in Mobile reports that toxicology reports are still not complete.

Surveillance video shows a confrontation between Collar and Austin, but does not show the fatal shot that killed Collar, nor does it include audio.

Family lawyers contend Collar never touched the officer and was never closer than four feet from the officer. USA representatives have claimed that Collar, who was a wrestler in high school, verbally challenged the officer in a fighting stance and rushed at him.  

The Collar family says it is not seeking money in its suit, only injunctive relief.

WPMI says the next Mobile County Grand Jury is not until January or February of 2013.

Copyright 2012  WSFA 12 News. The Associated Press contributed. All rights reserved.

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