Lawsuit Claims Utah Deputy Killed Man Following Chase over Public Urination

Low-speed chase ends with guy getting shot in the chest three times


A Utah sheriff's deputy saw a man peeing by the side of a road, then chased him at low speed and shot him to death, the man's mother claims in court.

Carolyn Clark sued Box Elder County, its Sheriff's Department and two deputies, including Officer Austin Bowcutt, in Federal Court. She claims Bowcutt shot and killed her son, Troy Burkinshaw, in October 2012.

"On the evening of Oct. 26, 2012, Box Elder County sheriff's deputy Austin Bowcutt stopped Troy Clark Burkinshaw (age 52) on westbound SR-13, after he allegedly observed Troy urinating on the side of the highway," the complaint states. "Before the traffic stop was complete, Troy drove away and headed toward his home. Deputy Bowcutt called for backup and initiated a pursuit.

"Troy traveled mostly at low speeds through an agricultural/residential area, at one point repeatedly circling the same block. Troy eventually turned down a dead end road. Deputy Bowcutt attempted to block the exit with his police truck while Troy attempted to edge his car around the police truck.

"Without waiting for backup to arrive, Deputy Bowcutt exited his truck with his weapon drawn, placed himself in front of Troy's car, and shouted for Troy to stop. Deputy Bowcutt then fired three shots directly into the car, two of which struck Troy in the chest, killing him.