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Man Sues Police After Being Charged With Wife's Manslaughter When She Died Walking Home After He'd Stopped Her Drink Driving

Dominic Smithers

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Man Sues Police After Being Charged With Wife's Manslaughter When She Died Walking Home After He'd Stopped Her Drink Driving

Featured Image Credit: Google

A man is suing a police officer whose investigation led to him being charged him with his wife's manslaughter after she was killed walking home.

Jason Todd's band were playing at Friends Steakhouse in Alabama when his wife Tonya Anderson told him that she wanted to go home.

Mr Todd was walking back into the bar and spotted his wife, who had been drinking, attempting to get into her car and go home.

He told her not to get in the car and said he would take her when he had paid his tab.

According to reports, Ms Anderson, 35, threatened to walk home, but not believing she would follow through, Mr Todd said, 'Fine, walk home'.

On her way home, Ms Anderson was struck by a vehicle and died.

Following the tragic incident back in 2018, Mr Todd, 42, was charged with manslaughter.

Jason Todd was charged with the manslaughter of his wife Tonya Anderson. Credit: Google Street View
Jason Todd was charged with the manslaughter of his wife Tonya Anderson. Credit: Google Street View

Police alleged at the time he had thrown his wife's keys into the road, which led to her walking out and being hit.

Mr Todd repeatedly denied the charge, saying he never threw her keys anywhere.

Due to a lack of evidence, a court ruled against the charge last year.

Mr Todd is now suing officer David Hicks, who launched the investigation and instigated the manslaughter charge.

According to his lawsuit, camera footage from that night showed he and his wife searching for something inside the car.

The pair then got out and turned away from one another, but at no point does it show a key being thrown.

Ms Anderson then walked out into the road and was hit by a blue Dodge Charger at around midnight.

Following his wife's death, Mr Todd was called into Clanton Police Department for questioning, during which he was allegedly shown the badly mutilated body of his wife.

Ms Anderson died after stepping out into the road and being struck by a passing car. Credit: Google Street View
Ms Anderson died after stepping out into the road and being struck by a passing car. Credit: Google Street View

Footage from his interview shows officers saying: "We’re telling you what happened. You got mad and threw those keys.

"The weight of those keys being thrown is sitting on your shoulders. That’s why you can’t sleep at night. It’s eating you alive."

Speaking about his interrogation, Mr Todd's lawyer Richard Jaffe told AL.com: "He was continuously berated and screamed at by two different officers or detectives interrogating him, trying to guilt him into confessing to something he didn’t do."

At a court hearing regarding the manslaughter charge, Detective Hicks said that even he wasn't sure if the CCTV footage showed Mr Todd throwing his wife's keys away.

He said: "I cannot say directly, conclusively, if there was a throwing motion."

Detective Hicks has since denied any wrongdoing.

His attorney said: "Each and every action taken by defendant (Hicks) was taken with the good faith belief that it was legal and lawful at the time so taken."

The trial for Mr Todd’s lawsuit against Hicks is set to start on 27 February 2023.

Topics: US News, Crime

Dominic Smithers
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