The testimony hinged on when the officer turned on his lights during a high-speed pursuit/Sound Publishing archives

Report: Officer Who Killed Himself Claimed the City of Seattle Pressured Him to Lie Under Oath

The city attorney’s office denies the claims.

A Lakewood police officer who took his own life in late April believed that he was pressured by the Seattle City Attorney’s Office to lie under oath to aid the city in a lawsuit, the Tacoma News Tribune reported today.

The whole story stems from a 2006 incident that left a 16-year-old girl, Channary Hor, paralyzed. Arron Grant, 40 at the time of his death, was a Seattle police officer at the time and was one of the responding officers on the scene. The incident took place in Seward Park in Southeast Seattle, where, after an officer approached a parked car that housed Hor and driver Omar Tammam. Tammam sped off at high speed, passing Grant’s patrol car, before crashing the car and fleeing the scene. Hor’s injuries left her quadriplegic and she sued the city for damages, claiming that the officers violated Seattle Police Department policy for high-speed pursuits.

A jury eventually found that the officers were not responsible for Hor’s injuries, and both Grant and the city were off the hook. However, as the Tribune reports, colleagues at the Lakewood City Police Department say that Grant claimed his testimony was untruthful and that the city attorney’s office had coerced him to make up parts of his story. Specifically, Grant told co-workers that he couldn’t remember when he turned on his cruiser’s emergency lights, but that city attorneys instructed him to state something else.

Colleagues also told the Tribune that Grant was very troubled by his testimony and that he frequently spoke to co-workers about it.

On April 25th, Grant shot himself.

In a statement provided to the Tribune, the city attorney’s office denies that its staff “pressured or encouraged” Grant to give false testimony. Here’s the statement in full:

“The City Attorney’s Office and the attorneys who tried the Hor v. City litigation for the City are very saddened by Officer Grant’s death. Our thoughts are with his family. Responding to the allegations regarding Officer Grant’s testimony in the Hor case, both the City Attorney and the attorneys who tried the case reject the assertion that Officer Grant was pressured to tell a favorable story for the City. His testimony at trial was consistent with the report he wrote on the day of the incident and the testimony of his fellow officer, Adam Thorp, as well as the physical facts of the case and other evidence.

“Officer Grant was forthright and straightforward in his testimony, both in deposition and at trial. Both he and Officer Thorp were subjected to rigorous cross examination by very experienced and highly skilled plaintiff’s counsel. The jury rejected the claim that the officers were negligent in their actions associated with this unfortunate accident that injured Ms. Hor. The case was reviewed on appeal by the Court of Appeals and the verdict in favor of the city was affirmed. The Supreme Court rejected a request for review.

“It is tragic that Officer Arron Grant, who served as a distinguished police officer for both the cities of Seattle and Lakewood, has taken his own life. It is clear that he was grappling with many issues before he died. The attorneys who represented the City did not pressure or encourage Officer Grant to perjure himself at any time.”

jkelety@seattleweekly.com


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@seattleweekly.com.

More in News & Comment

Auburn Mountain View Cemetery Manager Craig Hudson, center, confers with maintenance workers David Partridge, left, and Zach Hopper in March 2020. Sound Publishing file photo
State allows weddings, funerals, religious services to restart with restrictions

Gov. Inslee issues new rules during May 27 news conference.

Puget Sound renters will need housing assistance

Nonprofits, activists are expecting greater need as workers are laid off.

State loosens cougar hunting restrictions

The regulations will impact 19 areas around the state.

American Medical Response (AMR) organized a parade of first responders to show appreciation for St. Elizabeth Hospital staff April 30. Photo by Ray Miller-Still/Sound Publishing
The complications of counting COVID deaths in Washington

State relies on results of tests and death certificates in calculating the daily toll of the disease.

Republicans file lawsuit over Inslee’s emergency: ‘Facts, and the science, are clear’

Lawsuit says state has violated Constitutional rights of citizens.

The Regional Homelessness Authority was created by agreement in December 2019. Pictured: King County Executive Dow Constantine shakes hands with Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan. Courtesy photo
Regional homelessness authority takes first step amid COVID-19

The authority held its first meeting on Thursday.

Among the candidates for Washington state governor in 2020: (Top row, L-R): Omari Tahir Garrett, Winston Wilkes, Thor Amundson, Cameron Vessey, Martin ‘Iceman’ Wheeler, Ryan Ryals; (middle row L-R): Liz Hallock, Goodspaceguy, Gov. Jay Inslee, Don Rivers, Gene Hart; (bottom row L-R): Phil Fortunato, Tim Eyman, Alex Tsimerman, Cairo D’Almeida, Cregan Newhouse, Raul Garcia.
GOP gubernatorial hopefuls aim to oust Inslee amid COVID-19

Former Bothell mayor Joshua Freed and initiative-pusher Tim Eyman could be the front-runners.

Nonprofit launches new online COVID-19 local resource hub for King County

Hub collects links for more than 300 local resources for people affected by virus.

Most Read