Wash. high court allows family lawsuit over slow 911 response
SEATTLE (AP) -- Washington's Supreme Court says the family of a man shot and killed by his neighbor in Skagit County can proceed to trial on their claims that the county's emergency communications center mishandled its response to his panicked 911 call.
William R. Munich was on his property at Lake Campbell in October 2005 when Marvin Ballsmider shot at him.
Munich called 911 and hid in a structure on his property. There were three cars inside, and he could have driven away, but the 911 operator told him to wait for a deputy. However, the operator failed to code the call as an emergency, and the deputy didn't arrive as quickly as he could have.
In the meantime, the neighbor came into the hangar and flushed Munich out. Ballsmider chased him in a car and continued shooting. Munich made another 911 call, which ended when he was shot to death.