The family of a developmentally disabled man shot to death by a former LAPD officer inside a Costco store in Corona has been awarded $17 million in damages by a jury in Riverside.
Kenneth French, 32, was killed by former officer Salvador Sanchez after a confrontation near a sample table in June 2019. Sanchez also shot French’s parents, Russell and Paola, who both survived their wounds.
“I am pleased with the verdict and hoping it brings some justice to the family,” French family attorney Dale Galipo told the I-Team late Wednesday.
Sanchez told Corona Police detectives in 2019 he thought he had been shot in the head, and witnesses told police they saw Sanchez drop to the floor, draw a pistol, and begin firing.
The jurors also found that Sanchez’s actions were within ‘the scope’ of Sanchez’s employment at the LAPD, even though he was off duty at the time. That means the city of Los Angeles may shoulder much of the liability for the damage award.
The LAPD fired Sanchez in 2020 after an administrative investigation found the shooting was out of policy.
Sanchez was charged with manslaughter and assault with a firearm in August by the California Department of Justice, after the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office said a grand jury declined to bring criminal charges.
Sanchez is awaiting trial.