The mother of 18-year-old Marc Strickland, who was fatally shot during a Dallas Independent School District basketball game, plans to file a lawsuit against the district.
Strickland was attending a basketball game inside Dallas’s ISD’s Ellis Davis Fieldhouse on Jan. 11 when a 15-year-old came in with a handgun and shot him. Students with camera phones captured the shooting. It caused panic for the 600 attendees of the Kimball vs. South Oak Cliff basketball game and cleared the gymnasium.
Strickland died on Jan. 18.
Justin Moore, the lawyer representing the family, believes Strickland’s death could have been prevented if metal detectors had been used to screen people before the game.
Moore said that Strickland’s mother is struggling with the sudden loss of her son.
“She’s going through that, but she’s also trying to make sure that his legacy doesn’t end up dying in vain — making sure that the school district is being held accountable for his loss,” he said.
Moore said that the district showed disregard for the lives of the people who went to the game.
“We fully want to hold the school district and those who work for the school district — as well as the school board trustees — liable for the death of Mr. Strickland because we believe his blood is on their hands,” he said.
The boy suspected of shooting Strickland turned himself in to the police after witnesses identified him through images captured by security cameras. Charges against the 15-year-old have been upgraded to murder.
Michael Hinojosa, superintendent of the Dallas Independent School District, said the violence that erupted at the basketball game signaled the city’s long-held truce that school sporting events were off-limits as venues for settling feuds, had been broken.
Hinojosa also mentioned various measures taken immediately to increase security at school sporting events, like banning bags, purses and backpacks. He said spectators would either have to pass through metal detectors or be checked with metal-detecting wands before going to games.