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Ralph Yarl's family files lawsuit against Andrew Lester, HOA over shooting incident

Last April, Yarl mistakenly went to the wrong house while picking up his younger brothers from a friend's home and was shot in the head and arm. 
Ralph Yarl, the 16-year-old who was shot when he went to the wrong house to pick up his younger brothers.
Posted at 1:57 PM, Apr 29, 2024

The family of Ralph Yarl has filed a civil lawsuit against his accused shooter and the homeowners association where the shooting took place.

Yarl, a Black teenager from Kansas City, Missouri, was picking up his younger brothers from a friend's house last April when he accidentally went to the wrong home and was shot in the head and arm by 84-year-old White homeowner Andrew Lester.

Lester was later charged with first-degree assault and armed criminal action. He pleaded not guilty and argued that he was protecting himself because he thought someone was trying to rob him late at night. He's scheduled to go on trial in October.

Ralph Yarl's father, Paul Yarl, appears in a television interview.

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On Monday, Yarl's mother, Cleopatra Nagbe, took legal action by filing a civil lawsuit against Lester and the Highland Acres Homes Association. She alleges that both parties were negligent during the incident, resulting in Yarl being "severely injured and suffering bodily, emotional, psychological, and physiological harm and damages."

Furthermore, the lawsuit states that Lester never contacted the police before the shooting to signal that he felt threatened or endangered, and that the HOA was “aware of or should have been aware” of Lester’s “propensity for violence, access to dangerous weapons, and racial animus." It also accuses the association of failing to "render aid" to Yarl after he was shot, and neglecting to educate its residents on firearm usage in the neighborhood.

According to the filing, the family is asking for financial compensation to cover medical bills and other costs they’ve had to pay because of the incident. They are looking for an amount “in excess of this Court’s jurisdictional limit, plus the costs of this suit.”