Mother sues SF police over son's death

Kenneth Wade Harding, 19, fatally wounded himself while running away from officers


San Francisco Chronicle

SAN FRANCISCO - The mother of a Washington state parolee who accidentally shot himself to death during a gunfight with San Francisco police last year has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city.

Kenneth Wade Harding, 19, fatally wounded himself while running away from officers who stopped him on Third Street in the Bayview neighborhood for failing to pay a Muni fare, police said. But in a lawsuit filed Friday in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, Harding's mother Denika Chatman said police have some responsibility for her son's death and that officers failed to give him immediate medical care. Instead, they "left him writhing in pain with blood gushing out of his neck," the suit said.

"He was literally allowed to drown in his own blood," said Chatman's attorney John Burris. "He was killed needlessly."

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