City Of Tallahassee Settles Lawsuit With Family Of Reshard Morrell

Updated By: Julie Montanaro
May 16, 2014

The City of Tallahassee has settled a lawsuit with the family of an innocent bystander shot and killed outside the Elks Lodge.

15-year-old Reshard Morrell was killed while leaving a party on April 22nd, 2011 as rival gang members squared off in the parking lot.

Court records show Morrell's family sued the Elks Lodge, Kappa Alpha Psi - which was hosting the party - and the City of Tallahassee which had off-duty officers working security there that night.

This week, city commissioners approved an 85-thousand dollar settlement with the family. The city attorney says a jury could have found the officers liable for failing to check the parking lot and perimeter before party-goers left.

Court records show the Elks Lodge and the fraternity have already settled with the family, but the details of those settlements are confidential.

Tallahassee, FL -- April 24, 2012 --

"It still just don't seem real."

Wanda Norton is visiting her son's grave for the first time since last July.

"Compared to last year, I've grown. I can do it now."

Norton went to the cemetary Tuesday afternoon - the one year anniversary of when her 15-year-old son Reshard Morrell was buried there.

Morrell was shot April 23, 2011 outside of the Elks Lodge in Tallahassee...

Police say shots were fired into a crowd of about 300 in the parking lot after a teen party.

Morrell was hit, and died the next day.

Norton vividly remembers the night of the shooting.

Norton says, "We were dancing. He had cleaned up the house. It never smelled so good after he cleaned up. He had the whole house clean. He was ready to go the the party, so excited. I can just remember the smile on his face. Never seen nothing like it."

Morrell's sister and other loved ones joined Norton to clean the grave and plant fresh flowers.

Reshard's sister Rickita Morrell says, "I think about him every day. So, when I get a chance, I come out here and visit him. Me and the baby just come out and talk sometimes. It's a lot of memories. That's why I think it's so hard."

Reshard's aunt Rhodesia Norton says, "The day they actually buried him, I came here, but, I couldn't come and watch them put him in the ground. It was hard. It's hard."

Darnell Eutsay was arrested for Morrell's murder. Morrell's mother says she is patiently waiting for his trial.

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  • by Grace on Apr 26, 2012 at 05:49 AM
    If I had teenagers in this town I would not let them go to any gatherings like this. It's sad, but there's just too many thug wannabes running around with guns. The real problem of course, is the lack of parenting - those who could care less what their little thug wannabe kids are doing. Not fair for the good kids, but if you want to keep them alive I would keep them home, or in a small gathering in which I knew who was going to be there.
    • reply
      by Jane on Apr 30, 2012 at 06:02 AM in reply to Grace
      Grace, this was a sponsered event at an appropriate location for teens with police supervision. Reshard's murder wasn't the fault of the event coordinators and it wasn't his parent's fault for letting him attend. The only blame in this situation lies at the feet of the one who shot him. To put it anywhere else is ridiculous. One man shot this child and one man should take the responsibility for this.
  • by Jane on Apr 25, 2012 at 08:45 AM
    My daughter was friends with Reshard and we are also mourning his death. She remembers such great things about him and the kind of friend he was. Reshard will always be missed. To the family: May the knowledge that you are surrounded by love help bring you peace. Rest in peace, Reshard, rest in peace.
  • by Vic on Apr 25, 2012 at 08:38 AM
    Very sad and my heart goes out to the Mother and family. Death to the low life who took the joy from this family.
  • by Tyrone Location: southside on Apr 25, 2012 at 07:30 AM
    You take a loaded gun to a large gathering, and you for some reason take it out and have it in your hands at his large gathering, and it is still called an accident? If the punishment does not fit no lesson will be learned.
  • by Leona on Apr 25, 2012 at 05:54 AM
    Heart Breaking...
  • by it's true on Apr 25, 2012 at 04:51 AM
    Young black punks with guns....
  • by Hometown Location: Monticello on Apr 25, 2012 at 04:36 AM
    Sending continued prayers and thoughts for Wanda and her family. After the funeral, everyone returns to their normal lives but it is important to keep in touch and send prayers of comfort because this is what is needed. Nothing is more heartbreaking than having to bury your child. So as a community let us all pray for her and her family. Rashard was such an angel and he was raised in a loving and caring family home. He is truly missed.
  • by Docker Location: Wakulla on Apr 25, 2012 at 02:17 AM
    This was merely an initiation rite.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Apr 25, 2012 at 07:13 AM in reply to Docker
  • by Darryl Location: Tallahassee on Apr 25, 2012 at 12:39 AM
    Well, since the killer was arrested QUICKLY , there was no need for a civil rights rally! It's sad that folks have NOT seemed to figure out that people don't protest when the authorities are doing their job in the persuit of justice.
  • by Tally Location: Tallahassee on Apr 24, 2012 at 07:42 PM
    Only in America....go back to your hole!
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