Florida Senate - 2018 (NP) SB 32 By Senator Rouson 19-00221-18 201832__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act for the relief of Reginald Jackson by the City 3 of Lakeland; providing an appropriation to compensate 4 Reginald Jackson for injuries and damages sustained as 5 a result of the negligence of Mike Cochran, a police 6 officer for the Lakeland Police Department; providing 7 a limitation on the payment of attorney fees; 8 providing an effective date. 9 10 WHEREAS, on October 18, 2001, Officer Mike Cochran of the 11 Lakeland Police Department negligently and carelessly shot 12 Reginald Jackson, and 13 WHEREAS, the incident began when Officer Cochran stopped 14 Mr. Jackson for an invalid license tag after the officer had 15 incorrectly typed the tag number into his computer, and 16 WHEREAS, Officer Cochran then issued a citation to Mr. 17 Jackson for transporting his girlfriend’s 18-month-old brother 18 without a car seat and forbade Mr. Jackson from moving the 19 vehicle without properly restraining the child, and 20 WHEREAS, Mr. Jackson asked if Officer Cochran could escort 21 his vehicle to his home a short distance away, but the officer 22 refused and directed Mr. Jackson to call someone to bring a car 23 seat for the child, and 24 WHEREAS, Officer Cochran then positioned himself in an 25 alley parallel to the initial stop to observe Mr. Jackson drive 26 away to a pay phone at the next block, and 27 WHEREAS, while Mr. Jackson attempted to use a pay phone, 28 Officer Cochran approached him and told him that he was under 29 arrest for disobeying a law enforcement officer, and 30 WHEREAS, Mr. Jackson was startled by the officer and ran to 31 his vehicle and put it in reverse, then drove forward without 32 pressing the gas pedal, and 33 WHEREAS, Officer Cochran told Mr. Jackson to stop the 34 vehicle or he would shoot, Mr. Jackson then pumped his brakes 35 twice, and the officer fired a .45 caliber bullet through the 36 windshield which struck Mr. Jackson in the neck and exited 37 through his back, and 38 WHEREAS, Mr. Jackson was unarmed and seated next to an 18 39 month-old child, and 40 WHEREAS, after the shooting, the police transported the 41 child to the police station in a marked vehicle without a child 42 safety seat, and 43 WHEREAS, as the result of the injury, Mr. Jackson will 44 suffer pain and be disabled for the rest of his life, and 45 WHEREAS, a jury in the Circuit Court of the Tenth Judicial 46 Circuit in and for Polk County awarded Mr. Jackson $412,500 in 47 damages, and 48 WHEREAS, due to the limits of s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, 49 Mr. Jackson has collected only $100,000 of his judgment against 50 the City of Lakeland, and the remainder may be recovered only 51 through a claim bill approved by the Legislature, NOW, 52 THEREFORE, 53 54 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 55 56 Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are 57 found and declared to be true. 58 Section 2. The City of Lakeland is authorized and directed 59 to appropriate from funds of the city not otherwise appropriated 60 and to draw a warrant payable to Reginald Jackson for the sum of 61 $312,500 as compensation for injuries and damages sustained. 62 Section 3. The amount paid by the City of Lakeland pursuant 63 to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the amount awarded under 64 this act are intended to provide the sole compensation for all 65 present and future claims arising out of the factual situation 66 resulting in the shooting of Reginald Jackson as described in 67 this act. The total amount paid for attorney fees relating to 68 this claim may not exceed 25 percent of the amount awarded under 69 this act. 70 Section 4. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.