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Civil trial to begin over arrest in 2015 freeway shootings

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Posted at 12:03 PM, Oct 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-27 15:03:34-04

PHOENIX (AP) — A civil trial is scheduled to begin Wednesday in a false-arrest lawsuit filed by a landscaper once charged in some of metro Phoenix’s 2015 freeway shootings.

Leslie Merritt Jr. was jailed for seven months on charges in four of the 11 shootings until his case was dismissed in 2016 after ballistics evidence came under heavy criticism.

Merritt has steadfastly maintained his innocence. Merritt alleged authorities pursued charges even though they knew his handgun was at a pawn shop during the last of the four shootings with which he was charged. The Arizona Department of Public Safety, which arrested Merritt, has denied the allegation.