Jury rules against family in Marquise Jones civil trial

SAPD officer didn't use excessive force in fatal shooting, jury says

SAN ANTONIO – A jury on Thursday ruled against the family of Marquise Jones in a civil rights trial.

Jones, 23, was shot by off-duty San Antonio police Officer Robert Encina in 2014 after the car Jones was riding in rear-ended another car at the drive-thru of Chacho’s on Perrin-Beitel.

GET CAUGHT UP: Timeline of Marquise Jones civil trial

Jones’ family sued Encina and the city for damages in federal court, alleging Encina used excessive and unreasonable force, violating Jones' constitutional rights. They also claim the city investigation was a cover-up, and that SAPD's lack of supervision and discipline of its officers led to a violation of Jones’ rights.

Jurors decided that Encina didn't use excessive and unnecessary deadly force that would have violated Jones' civil rights.

LEARN MORE: High-profile fatal incidents involving SA-area law enforcement officers

Jones' family wasn't in the courtroom when the verdict was read.

Encina left the federal courthouse without commenting. His lawyer, Mark Ralls, talked with reporters afterwards about the jury's decision.

"My guess would be is that he (Encina) feels vindicated, very glad to have this over," Ralls said. "We're always excited to get a defense verdict, particularly in the case where it was been long coming. Very content to get that verdict."

Daryl Washington, who represented the Jones' family, took exception to Encina's smile.

"There's no reason that anyone should be leaving this courtroom laughing. I mean, somebody died," he said. "It's (the verdict is) a disappointment because they put their trust in the legal system. You would hope that you would get justice. So it's a disppointment for not only for the Jones' family but for the hundreds of other families throughout the United States who have lost kids to senseless violence at the hands of individuals who serve to protect."

City Manager Sheryl Sculley released the following statement regarding the verdict:

"Today, a federal court jury in San Antonio returned a verdict in favor of the City and Officer Encina in the Marquise Jones case. While we agree with the jury's verdict, we fully recognize that there is never any victory in a fatal shooting. Our condolences continue to be extended to the family of Marquise Jones on the loss of a loved one. The mayor, city council, city staff and the San Antonio Police Department will continue on the path toward building stronger relationships with the communities we serve. Only through a partnership with the community can we achieve a safe and trusting environment for all."

Below are two interviews with Encina's lawyer Mark Ralls (above) and the Jones family's lawyer Daryl Washington (below):

Federal jury rules in favor of off-duty SAPD officer Ribert Encina who shot Marquise Jones in civil case. Officer Encina's lawyer, Mark Ralls, reacts.

Posted by Garrett Brnger on Thursday, April 6, 2017

The federal jury in the civil case over the 2014 shooting of Marquise Jones rules in favor of the off-duty officer who shot him. The Jones family lawyer Daryl Washington reacts to the verdict.

Posted by Garrett Brnger on Thursday, April 6, 2017


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About the Authors:

David Ibañez has been managing editor of KSAT.com since the website's launch in October 2000.

Garrett Brnger is a reporter with KSAT 12.