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Trial begins in suit over metro Phoenix's freeway attacks

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Posted at 4:32 PM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 19:32:35-04

PHOENIX (AP) — An attorney for a landscaper once charged in metro Phoenix’s 2015 freeway shootings told jurors at a civil trial that the Arizona Department of Public Safety has never accepted responsibility for falsely arresting his client.

Charges against Leslie Merritt Jr. were dismissed amid criticism of the case’s ballistic evidence.

Attorney David Don said Merritt has suffered from post-traumatic stress and other difficulties as a result of his arrest.

Merritt maintained his innocence and was jailed seven months before his release.

Ed Novak, an attorney defending the Department of Public Safety, said the arrest was made after the most senior agency employees had reviewed the evidence.