A Hebron woman has sued the police officers who shot and killed her husband in February 2020.

Nicole Gora filed her lawsuit Tuesday in the U.S. District Court in Portland. She alleged the officers violated Jason Gora’s rights when they followed him in a high-speed chase and then used deadly force against him. Verne Paradie, who is representing her, did not respond to a voicemail Tuesday afternoon.

The defendants are five individuals from the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office and the Mechanic Falls Police Department. They have not yet filed any documents in response to the lawsuit. Neither the sheriff nor the police chief responded to a voicemail Tuesday afternoon. Gora also included claims against the county and the town.

The complaint outlines the events that preceded the fatal shooting.

Jason Gora’s family members told police that he was having suicidal thoughts and wanted to provoke officers to kill him. On the day of the shooting, his siblings reported to police that Gora no longer had a gun because his brother had taken it away. That evening, officers from the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Department tried to pull Gora over in his Jeep. When he sped away, they followed him in a high-speed chase. The lawsuit says Gora hadn’t done anything to justify the traffic stop or the pursuit.

Gora eventually hit a Mechanic Falls police cruiser and fled his vehicle and the officers. The complaint says body cameras recorded the interaction that followed, but the darkness makes it hard to see what happened, and the footage cut out at a crucial point before the shooting.

“Without any provocation, Defendants then opened fire on Mr. Gora, firing multiple shots,” the complaint says.

Nicole Gora said the officers failed to follow procedures and policies for dealing with people who are suicidal, conducting traffic stops, engaging in high-speed chases and using deadly force.

“(The officers’) actions and deliberate indifference engaging in a high-speed pursuit with a suicidal individual, whom they were aware no longer possessed a gun, and then chasing and shooting Mr. Gora without provocation, were so egregious and outrageous that they shock the contemporary conscience,” the complaint says.

The lawsuit says the officers appear to have shot Gora from behind. The officers later said he turned toward them in a nearby field and was holding a large object that could have been a gun, but the complaint says it is not clear whether he turned, and the officers knew Gora did not have a gun. They later found a large knife near him.

The Maine Attorney General’s Office found in April that the four officers who shot Gora were justified in their actions and did not file charges against them.

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