Officer involved shooting lawsuit can proceed to trial

A federal judge decides a wrongful death lawsuit against a Kennewick police officer who shot and killed a man more than three years ago can proceed to trial.

Officer Lee Cooper killed Christopher Villarreal in downtown Kennewick in September 2009 after a car chase.

Cooper, the police department and the City of Kennewick asked for a summary judgment on the case, which asks the judge to consider the facts and determine if there should be a trial.

Yesterday, a judge determined parts of the case can go to trial.

An internal investigation of the incident that was conducted shortly after the shooting, showed Cooper's actions were lawful.