Family of slain man files wrongful death lawsuit against Hemingway officer

Published: Apr. 20, 2022 at 2:41 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 20, 2022 at 4:14 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - Attorneys for the family of a 46-year-old man killed in a February officer-involved shooting have filed a lawsuit against the Hemingway police officer.

Cassandra Dollard was charged with voluntary manslaughter in connection with the death of Robert Langley, according to the State Law Enforcement Division, which was called in to investigate the shooting.

Attorneys for the Langley family, Sen. Gerald Malloy, Bakari Sellers and Horry County Attorney Brana Williams, say despite a history of misconduct, the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy recertified Dollard, and the Hemingway Police Department hired her.

The training history of Dollard shows she was terminated from two law enforcement agencies over her career.

Meanwhile, the lawsuit alleges that Dollard has a history of misconduct including failing to call in stops or document encounters, improperly using her blue lights, striking the vehicle of a mother and small child after becoming frustrated and visibly angry, discharging her duty weapon and striking a dog while jogging off duty.

“It’s hard to believe that an officer with this kind of record wasn’t in jail, much less that she was recertified and hired,” Sellers said. “It’s irresponsible, it’s dangerous, and in this case, it was deadly.”

The lawsuit also accused Dollard of not giving aid to Langley after the shooting.

“You don’t get to put an officer with a history of misconduct and violence like this on the street to give her a badge and a gun and then wash your hands when there’s a tragedy like this,” Malloy said. “They were just as negligent as officer Dollard, and we intend to hold them responsible.”

The suit also alleges gross negligence and wrongful death against the Town of Hemmingway, Williamsburg County and the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy.

The family is asking for a jury trial and is seeking an unspecified amount of actual and punitive damage and attorney fees.

Back in March, the attorneys representing Langley released the dashcam video from the shooting.

A full copy of the lawsuit can be viewed below.

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