News & Blog

Hendler Flores Law Advocates for Members of the Deaf Community Victimized by Police

The Deaf Community faces unique challenges when communicating with law enforcement officials and far too often are unfairly victimized. Hendler Flores Law represents several members of this community, including Tyree Talley, Modesto Rodriguez and John Kelley, in cases involving excessive use of force by police.

John Kelley’s story was recently publicized in the Austin American Stateman. In May 2019, John was tased and kicked by San Marcos Police until he blacked out. At the time of the incident, John was having an argument with his wife using American Sign Language, but he was unarmed and not posing a threat to himself or anyone else. His case is a perfect example of the communication issues that can arise for deaf individuals during encounters with police. Hendler Flores Law is representing John in a lawsuit against the San Marcos Police Department. Our goal is to hold police officers accountable for their unjust actions in this case, and ultimately bring about change in the way individuals in the deaf community are treated by law enforcement.

To learn more about John Kelley’s story

https://www.statesman.com/story/news/2021/06/27/austin-deaf-man-sues-san-marcos-police-department-tased-kicked-excessive-force-lawsuit-says/7620075002/

Alex Gonzales’ tragic death shows need for restraint by off-duty police officers

In January 2021, Alex Gonzales was killed in a road rage incident involving off-duty police officer Gabriel Gutierrez. The officer was in his personal vehicle when he claims Gonzalex cut him off and pointed a gun at him. Guitierrez shot and injured Gonzalez and then called 911. When officers arrived, they fatally shot Gonzalez as he walked injured and unsteady toward the back of his car to check on his 2-month-old baby. 

Hendler Flores Law is representing the family of Alex Gonzales in a lawsuit against the City of Austin.

Experts agree the case highlights the perils of law enforcement officers taking action while off duty.

Learn more

Austin police officer Christopher Taylor charged with first-degree murder in Mike Ramos shooting

Last April Michael Ramos was fatally shot in his vehicle while slowly pulling away from police and heading into a dead end. Hendler Flores Law represents Brenda Ramos, Mike’s mother, in a lawsuit against the City of Austin, the Austin Police Department and police officer Christopher Taylor, who fired the fatal shots. Mike was unarmed and confused when he attempted to drive away headed into a dead end.

On March 10, 2021 a Travis County Grand Jury charged police officer Christopher Taylor with first-degree murder in the Mike Ramos shooting death, marking the first time in decades – perhaps ever – an APD officer has faced such a serious charge in an excessive force case. Brenda Ramos, the victim’s mother, is bringing the lawsuit in the hope of vindicating her son’s civil rights and holding Officer Taylor and the Austin Police Department accountable for their actions and their policies that result in unjustified and excessive incidents of use of force against members of Austin’s Black and Hispanic communities. Ms. Ramos’ lawsuit against the City of Austin and the Austin Police Department includes claims of fostering systemic inequalities against communities of color.

Read more

Scott Hendler Hopeful Manley’s Departure Will Mean Progressive New Leadership For APD

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley

Hendler Flores Law represents several families who have tragically lost loved ones to police violence in Austin, including the family of Mike Ramos. In April 2020 Mike Ramos was fatally shot by police officer Christopher Taylor while in his vehicle and unarmed. The footage of Ramos’ death has sparked national outrage and his mother, Brenda, is heartbroken over the loss of her only child.

Read more…


Rebecca Webber and Austin’s Public Safety Commission in the news!

The debate over decriminalizing homelessness

Growing Opioid Use Linked to Growing Number of Fatal Car Crashes

A syringe resting on a pile of white tablets

Read the article:

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/consumer/growing-number-fatal-car-crashes-linked-drug-use-n878986


‘My life hangs in the balance’

Her only chance at life is a new liver, but her insurer said no.

Read the article:
https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/13/health/liver-transplant-mom-erika-zak/index.html

 A man holding a woman's hand in a hospital bed


Lulu Flores in the news!

The Austin Music Commission’s request for space to merge with the city’s Arts Commission’s proposal?

“There’s really been a crisis of space over the last two years, as well as with music you’re losing venues and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to have performance space,” Lulu Flores said. “It might be good to join forces and work together to come up with an amount to include, and figure out the dedication of some space for recording in a multi-use facility.”


Rebecca Webber in the news!

AUSTIN STATESMAN ARTICLE:

Commission head seeks changes after EMS employee retires amid probes

Rebecca Webber, chairwoman of the city’s Public Safety Commission, wants to make sure internal investigations into public safety employees continue even if the person retires and is no longer working for the city.”


 

HF Law hired by Travis County to help with Opioid Litigation!

AUSTIN STATESMAN ARTICLE:

Travis County joins other counties, cities suing over opioid crisis

“Scott Hendler, one of the attorneys hired by Travis County, emphasized to Travis County commissioners in November the harm he alleges the companies have caused by aggressively pushing drugs they knew were highly addictive, then leaving local governments and other agencies to deal with the consequences… ‘I think that taking it on now to interdict the source of the problem is the way to combat it,’ Hendler said.”

Click here to read our PDF on the National Opioid Litigation

Chart depictting Overdose Deaths Involving Opioids, US, 2000-2016

Thomas Jefferson

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