Nearly five years after teen's death, family looking to set truth free

Nearly five years after teen's death, family looking to set truth free »Play Video

TIGARD, Ore. -- The family of a Tigard teen killed by police five years ago will finally get its day in court.

Lukus Glenn was shot after his family called 911 for help, fearing he would hurt himself. Another judge actually threw out the case about 18 months ago. The family appealed and now an appeals court decision sends the case to trial, which is a crucial victory for Lukus' mother, Hope, who believes her son should still be alive today.

"It's been five years, but five years you've played over in your head every day," said Hope Glenn. "It doesn't ever go away. Ever."

Ever since that day, Hope Glenn has been defending her son and questioning the use of deadly force by deputies.

"He was our whole life and in four minutes, it's taken away from you," she said. "Everything changes. People will say, 'Oh, it's five years in September and that it should be getting easier,' but it just gets tougher. It doesn't get easier."

Deputies said Lukus Glenn was distraught at the time and threatening to kill himself with a pocketknife. He was starting to break house property. Officers shot him with a beanbag gun and then with their handguns when he refused to surrender, they said. The appeals court ruling asks a jury to take a closer look at what happened leading up to those gun shots, questioning whether Lukus Glenn was a threat to anyone other than himself. Hope Glenn said a trial will finally allow the truth to come out.

"It just gives you one little glimmer that maybe something positive will happen instead of just kind of feeling hopeless, like you feel," she said. "For five years, you just kind of feel hopeless. You're fighting but you don't really know if anything is going to come from all your fight. We knew going it it was going to be a long, hard fight and we chose to stand up for him. He can't, so we will."

Hope Glenn said she is simply looking for justice, but the lawsuit is seeking about $7 million in compensation for what the lawsuit claims was a wrongful death and an excessive use of force. An attorney for the deputies refused to comment on the situation, only to say he was still reviewing the decision by the appeals court and exploring options.