Family of Guatemalan woman shot dead by border agent sues

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Dominga Vicente shows a photo of her niece, 20 year-old Claudia Patricia Gomez Gonzalez, who was allegedly killed by an agent of the U.S. Border Patrol in Laredo, Texas, on Wednesday, during a press conference at the National Migrants Commission headquarters in Guatemala City, Friday, May 25, 2018. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)

LAREDO, Texas (AP) — The family of a 20-year-old Guatemalan woman shot dead in 2018 by a U.S. Border Patrol agent filed a civil rights lawsuit Tuesday against the agent and the U.S. government.

The family of Claudia Gómez González is suing in federal court in Laredo, Texas for unspecified actual and punitive damages.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas filed the lawsuit one year after filing a $100 million federal claim on the family’s behalf. The claim was filed one year after the May 23, 2018, shooting.

The coffin with the remains of 19-year-old Guatemalan immigrant Claudia Gomez Gonzalez stands at her relatives house during the second day of her wake, in San Juan Ostuncalco, Guatemala, Friday, June 1, 2018. The young woman, who was fatally shot by a U.S. Border Patrol agent in Texas on May 23, 2018, had graduated as a forensic accountant but was unable to attend college or find a job, so she had left Guatemala for the U.S., according to her aunt. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)

Gómez González crossed the Texas-Mexico border with several other migrants when border agents confronted them in a vacant lot near Laredo. One agent shot Gómez González in the head, and she took moments to die, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit only refers to one of the 21 defendant agents by name, referring to the others as “Does 1-20.” The lawsuit alleges that one of the agents, or a combination of them, were responsible for the woman’s death and that she was the victim of excessive violence and a civil rights violation.

An email to the named agent seeking comment was not answered immediately.

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