Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans has donated $11,000 to a family whose father was shot and killed in his home during a confrontation with police.
Evans saw a story of the shooting and asked on Twitter Saturday where he could make a donation.
Is there a GoFundMe or a donation page for the family? https://t.co/ZUSf2a5Dkv
— Mike Evans (@MikeEvans13_) July 21, 2018
Evans donates $11,000 to shooting victim’s family
Later Saturday, Evans’ name appeared attached to an $11,000 donation on the GoFundMe page titled “$4 Verdict? – Justice for Greg Hill” seeking to raise money for the shooting victim’s family.
At the time of this post, the fundraising effort had totaled more than $98,000 of its $120,000 goal.
The Washington Post detailed the 2014 shooting and subsequent civil action sought by Hill’s family that resulted in the $4 jury award.
Police approached Hill after noise complaint about his music
Hill was home in his garage playing loud music across the street from a school in Fort Pierce, Florida when parents picking up their children called in a noise complaint to the police, according to The Post.
Sherriff’s deputies Christopher Newman and Edward Lopez reportedly responded to the complaint and knocked on Hill’s garage door after nobody answered when they knocked on the front door.
Police say Hill, drunk, was holding a gun in his right hand when he opened the garage door. Police say that Hill refused orders to drop the gun, instead pointing it toward the officers before closing the door. Newman then fired four shots toward Hill through the closing door, resulting in his death, according to police.
Hill was killed via gunshots to the head, abdomen and groin.
“Deputy Newman, perceiving that his life and the life of his fellow officer was in imminent danger, fired four shots at Hill,” a court document filed by Newman’s attorney reads. “As the garage door was in the process of being closed during this time, the bullets traveled through the garage door, striking and killing Hill.”
Victim’s family disputed police account of shooting
John Phillips, an attorney representing Hill’s mother Viola Bryant, contested the police account. Hill’s body was found with a 9mm pistol in his back pocket. Phillips argued that Hill would not have been able to put the gun in his back pocket after being shot. In short, the gun would have dropped from Hill’s hand to the floor if he was holding it when he was shot, according to Phillips.
“We thought we tried a winning case,” Phillips told The Post. “If the gun was in Hill’s pocket the entire time, then this would’ve been a violation of civil rights.”
Jury sides with police, awards family $4
Bryant sued Newman along with St. Lucie County Sheriff Ken Mascara for wrongful death. After two weeks of trial and 10 hours of deliberation, the jury found Hill 99 percent at fault for his death with Mascara being held accountable for 1 percent.
Despite deciding for the police, the jury awarded Hill’s family $4, a dollar for funeral costs and a dollar each for Hill’s three daughters ages 7, 10 and 13.
The small award prompted the GoFundMe page, which caught Evans’ attention. The cost of Hill’s funeral was estimated a $11,000, which may explain why Evans chose that amount.
It’s the second donation Evans has made has made related to a shooting after a childhood friend was accidentally and non-fatally shot in the head in April. Evans gave $10,000 to help cover his friend’s medical expenses.
After signing an $82 million extension in the spring, Evans said he planned “on helping a lot of people.”
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