Donald Trump Sued by Fiancée of Brian Sicknick, Officer Who Died After Responding to Jan. 6 Riots
The fiancée of an officer who died after responding to the Jan. 6, 2021 riots on the U.S. Capitol has taken legal action against Donald Trump.
Sandra Garza, the partner of late officer Brian Sicknick filed a civil lawsuit against Trump and two rioters — Julian Khater and George Tanios — on Thursday, the attorney for Sicknick's estate, Matt Kaiser, announced.
Trump, Khater, and Tanios are being sued for wrongful death, civil rights conspiracy, assault and other unnamed allegations, Kaiser said in the release shared via Twitter. He noted that the lawsuit was filed the day before the second anniversary of the Jan. 6 riots.
Kaiser said the lawsuit aims to "hold accountable those who caused the death of Officer Sicknick as he defended the United States Capitol."
A rep for Trump and lawyers for Khater and Tanios did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.
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"Nothing can return Officer Sicknick to his fiancée or his family, but this lawsuit is an important part of the process of holding those who caused his death accountable," said Kaiser in a statement included in the release.
He alleged that Trump "called Khater and Tanios to Washington D.C. to attack the Capitol and they answered."
"This directly caused Officer Sicknick's death," added the attorney, who later noted that Garza represents Sicknick's estate and will donate any money awarded from the lawsuit to charity.
Garza is suing for $10 million, CBS News Congressional Correspondent Scott MacFarlane shared via Twitter.
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Court documents obtained by CNN allege, "As Officer Sicknick and hundreds of others — including other police officers, elected officials, and rank-and-file workers at the Capitol — were put in mortal danger, and as the seat of American Democracy was desecrated by the insurgent mob, Defendant Trump watched the events unfold on live television from the safety of the White House."
The filing added that "The horrific events of January 6, 2021, including Officer Sicknick's tragic, wrongful death, were a direct and foreseeable consequence of the Defendants' unlawful actions," per the outlet.
Kaiser and his legal team state in papers that the former president told his fanbase to "fight like hell" and "show strength" ahead of the violent protests, CNN reported.
During the riots, Sicknick was "sprayed with a chemical substance outside the U.S. Capitol" at approximately 2:20 p.m., and collapsed at the U.S. Capitol nearly 8 hours later at 10 p.m., when he was transported by D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services to a local hospital.
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Sicknick died at the hospital the next day at 9:30 p.m. In announcing his death, U.S. Capitol Police said Sicknick had been "injured while physically engaging with protesters" and died "due to injuries sustained while on-duty," though the assertion was made before Sicknick's autopsy was completed.
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner determined in April 2021 that 42-year-old Sicknick's cause of death was "acute brainstem and cerebellar infarcts due to acute basilar artery thrombosis," and ruled that his manner of death was "natural," according to a release obtained by PEOPLE at the time.
Medical examiner Francisco J. Diaz explained to The Washington Post that Sicknick suffered two strokes that had been caused by a blood clot. He added that "all that transpired" on the day of the insurrection "played a role in his condition."
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Sicknick's death marked one of five fatalities in connection to the insurrection, in which Donald Trump supporters stormed the Capitol and vandalized offices as lawmakers gathered to certify electoral college votes for President Joe Biden's November election win.
Khater and Tanios were later charged with nine counts, including three counts of assaulting officers with a deadly weapon, civil disorder and obstruction of a congressional proceeding, according to a criminal complaint filed in the United States District Court of D.C.
According to MacFarlane, they previously pled guilty last summer and will be sentenced on Jan. 27.