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Lawsuit Filed Against City of Star, Ada County, and Officers for 2022 Fatal Shooting

By • June 19, 2024

The parents of Jeremy Banach have filed a complaint and demand for jury trial in Ada County District Court regarding the fatal shooting death of their son on June 15, 2022 by Star Police.

In the past two years since the incident, details of the case have been discussed here, here, here, and here.

You may recall that Banach had struggled with drug use and was intoxicated on that day and believed to have a knife in his possession. His parents reported that he would not leave the backyard of their home. Police arrived and found he was carrying a firearm. It was later discovered to be the weapon that Banach’s father had reported stolen. Police allowed Banach to leave his parents’ property, under the influence, and with the firearm. A short while later, Banach was shot to death near the parking lot of the Star Mercantile. Star police fired five rounds, all of which hit various places on Banach’s back.

You can read the Ada County Coroner’s Report here.

The complaint alleges, among other things, that,

 “The defendants’ decision to open fire upon Jeremy was unnecessary, unreasonable, unlawful, and unjustified. Defendants’ actions were not taken in good-faith and were in violation of clearly established law. Defendants were thereby negligent, negligent per se, committed unlawful battery, and violated Jeremy’s rights guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution, as well as Article I section 1 and Article I, section 17 of the Idaho Constitution.”

This page of the Ada County Sheriff’s policy manual shows a highlighted section which the Banach family says was violated with the Star Police handling of Jeremy’s situation.

Jeremy policy violation

For what they claim is the wrongful death of their son, Banach’s parents are seeking compensatory and punitive damages in amounts to be determined at trial, the costs of the lawsuit, and the costs of attorneys’ fees.

The complaint also states,

“Plaintiffs may further seek equitable relief, including by not limited to training, education, and audit assessments of the officers and law enforcement agencies’ policies, procedures, and training programs.”

Banach lawsuit

Body camera footage and other related video released by the Ada County Sheriff’s office can be viewed here. Viewer discretion advised.

The Ada County Critical Incident Task Force (CITF) investigated the incident. The 256-page report can be found here, dated June 15, 2022.

Valley County was tasked with reviewing the work and findings of the Ada County CITF. Their summary can be seen below. It concludes with the Valley County Prosecuting Attorney saying,

“Based on my analysis of the evidence in this case, the actions taken by the Deputies, and the legal framework in the State of Idaho, I conclude that the actions taken by Officers Woodcock, Steele, and Turner in this case were reasonable and that probable cause existed to believe that Jeremy Banach’s flight posed a real and immediate risk of death or serious injury to the Deputies and/or members of the public. The use of deadly force by the Deputies in this case was justifiable and thus, I have declined to file criminal charges against the Deputies involved.”

Valley_County_PA_Letter_Banach_Redacted_final

On the one-year anniversary of Jeremy’s death, a memorial gathering was held in Star where he died.

Banach’s parents spoke to the Idaho Dispatch in 2023 about the death of their son. You can see the interview here.

 

Featured photo shows Edward (Skip) Banach and Jeremy Banach in 2016.

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Tags: Ada County, Ada County Sheriff, CITF, City of Star, Critical Incident Task Force, Gina Banach, Jeremy Banach, Lawsuit, Officer-involved shooting, Skip Banach, Star Police, Valley County, Wrongful death

21 thoughts on “Lawsuit Filed Against City of Star, Ada County, and Officers for 2022 Fatal Shooting

  1. So… your son is high on fentanyl and meth… you call the cops to make him leave your home.

    They come… he leaves… but steals a gun.

    You call the cops and tell them he stole a gun… and is high on fentanyl and meth wandering the neighborhood.

    Cops approach, he draws gun, refuses to cooperate with commands, and they drop him. Tell me again parents… how is the cop to blame? Your loser kid? Sure. Maybe even your parenting? Sure. But once that gun’s drawn, it’s over.

    With that said… no… I don’t see in the video what the cops are saying actually happened. Could be the angle… don’t know. But at no point do I see him point the gun at the officers. He pulls it, and appears to point it at his own head. It’s clear from his actions and his comments that he wanted to die… so be it. But for the sake of truth, saying he pointed it at the cops isn’t exactly born out by the video they released.

    1. Red west here u are again keeping that keyboard gangster hand strong . 1st off the parents called for help because at the house he had a weapon that he stole if ur had u read throughly they reported the gun stolen days prior and he was high at their home . They told him to leave with weapon in hand after seeing him high .. tell me how getting 5 shots in the back while holding a gun to his own head warrants that . They fucked up letting him leave in the 1st place second I hope u and ur family never have to deal with someone struggling with addiction or even worse a death because of it . To be hurtful and saying he’s a loser because of it is truly ignorant on ur part but once again u have made itself out to be the real twat commenting with ur ignorance and obviously lack of knowledge or compassion for others struggling with a disease.. at least u hot that last part right they were in no danger as he never pointed or threatened officers but being insubordinate doesn’t warrant death specially if there was no danger except himself where all other measures should have been taken to persevere life

      1. Hey Karen, those officers were not informed about the gun because the parent, a former cop himself, hid the fact. He is responsible for his son’s death. If you show up at my house waving a gun around, have created a life and death situation. I don’t know what your true intentions are. I will protect my house hold to the FULLEST extent of the law. I’ll drop your ass, even if it take pitting 5 in your back. The office is responsible for the whole of the community. The office was aware of the bystanders watch the events unfold. The unarmed citizen had a right to protect. That is part of the officers job. I’m proud of his actions that day. And the family should do us a favor and move back to California.

  2. Tragic. Could have been suicide by cop.

    Officers should have more training in martial arts like krav maga and Brazilian jiu-jits. In this case that may have given the officer more skill and confidence in wresting the gun from the suspect. Krav maga teaches weapon disarms.

      1. Read the report. The officer tried to wrest the gun away, which means they were engaged in a hand-to-hand struggle, not 10 ft distance. If the officer were successful, the situation would not have escalated to the point of lethal force.

        But I don’t blame the officer. I blame the reckless, intoxicated man. What I am saying is hand-to-hand combat skills may prevent situations from escalating to lethal force.

        1. You might want to see the video, because the cops were never that close to him. He was continually walking away from them as they tried to approach him, and walking into a neighborhood where his carelessness was going to make his actions even more dangerous. By the time he pulled his gun out, they were frantically warning him of the worst, and he said something to the effect that this is what he wanted. It sounds like he wanted a suicide-by-cop-situation.

  3. Did anyone read in the yellow highlighted area in the complaint where law enforcement is required to “take into custody” an armed and dangerous meth addict? Waving around a gun? Threatening and endangering those around him at risk of their own life or those around them? I don’’t see any of that in that law they referred to.
    It does not even specify, custody being defined as dead or alive. A “body” can be taken into custody by the coroner. This case has no merit at all. It’s ridiculous it can even be considered in a court of law, let alone go to trial.

    1. He was facing away from them .. had they felt he was a threat why let him leave the residence with him and after seeing under the influence. Idaho law states u cannot be in possession of any weapon while under the influence so .. this could have been prevented if the offices had done their job at the home .. can’t stop a bullet from ten feet actually 8 especially when u don’t have eyes in the back of ur head and his gun never pointed at the cops so how would they need to stop a bullet

      1. He doesn’t have to be a threat to the LEO’s. He can be a threat to the public as well. If he shoots someone else while waving that gun around and the police COULD have stopped him, now THAT’s a negligence lawsuit just waiting to happen.
        I still have to question the parents, however. They were apparently intelligent enough to report to the police that a firearm was missing but _not_ enough to get their kid help for an addiction. Hmmm…..

  4. Criminals are the hero’s. Poor victims. WTF!?
    Evil is good and good is evil. Justice will not be tolerated. Police are not allowed to protect the public. They call for help and then cry foul because their despotic adult grown offspring do suicide by cop.

  5. Let’s neuter the police, that’s the trend. Stop them from performing their job. Sad there seems to be no responsibility from the drug user with a gun or the family. Sounds like an attempt to receive money from people doing their job.

    1. If u had listened to them speak they aren’t looking for a pay day they are looking to hold officers accountability and get more training for these situations. This was 100% preventable and all actions should be taken before lethal force is taken. Specially in a state where everyone has a gun can’t go shooting everyone because u work in a state where guns are legal instead of the law states u cannot be in possession of a firearm or other weapons then the correct things and officers upholding the law should follow the law and either arrest or at very minimal take said weapons away so that this didn’t have the outcome it had ..

  6. The article above states that the police let Banach leave his parents property intoxicated and with the firearm then a while later the shooting which lead to Banachs death. Seems like police failed by not taking Banach to a facility for treatment or jail if anything. Both places would’ve kept him safe and drug free and possibly would’ve provided mental stability down the road. Sucks this situation happened cuz yeah…it took a life, rather good or bad, it could’ve been prevented if proper measures were taken into action. That’s why they exist so shit like this don’t happen

  7. Summary: Star deputies responded to a call for service regarding thirty-nine-year-old Jeremy Banach who was trespassing in the backyard of his parents’ home. The reporting party, Skip Banach, told deputies (“Star Police”) his son had a knife. Deputies were positioned outside the fenced yard while other deputies equipped with a ballistic shield and guns at the low ready contacted Jeremy and built a rapport.

    A video of the event was released for public consumption. As a thirty-two-year veteran peace officer and trainer of firearms and tactics, I see the video as an indictment of negligence. Specifically, it verifies the knowledge and observations of the deputies that Jeremy was armed not with a knife, but a “gun” and “…appeared disoriented and intoxicated.”

    There was ample cause to separate Jeremy from the gun while properly detained and contained in the yard and then investigate reasonable suspicion of a crime: being intoxicated with a concealed firearm (IC 18-3302 B), and/or evaluate for a mental hold.

    Jeremy was permitted to walk away — with the gun. One deputy told Jeremy, “Just don’t reach for your gun and you’re good man. You can go.” After Jeremy left the property Skip Banach was told by deputies that he had a gun, not a knife. Skip told deputies the gun was likely one stolen from him three days before. Deputies then worked to locate Jermey who ultimately pointed the gun to his head while walking away disobeying commands.

    According to Valley County Prosecutor Brian Naugle, Jeremy “…was an immediate threat to deputies and members of the public nearby…” when Deputy Woodcook shot him.

    Had deputies investigated their initial observations that Jeremy appeared “…disoriented AND intoxicated” during the initial contact, the outcome would have been different.

    In a post on the Ada County Sheriff Website dated March 14, 2023, the second to the last paragraph reads,

    “The report of the stolen gun — a felony—combined with Banach’s behavior, demeanor, and history of drug abuse were concerning for Star Police.”

    Why weren’t those factors “concerning” for “Star Police” in the backyard before Jeremy was permitted to walk away with the gun?

    Had the gun been taken away from Jeremy in the fenced yard it is likely it would have been determined to be stolen when the serial number was run. Why was the call handled this way? Does it reflect a lack of training, supervision, initiative, discernment, or the knowledge of fundamentals?

    1. Thank you for this….I imagine star police need more training and this lawsuit is a wake up call.

    2. I think you’re Monday morning QB’ing a bit here. Were all the facts known to the deputies when they made first contact in the backyard? Not sure where you did your 32 years but the propensity to take away a 2A right is strong in west coast blue states but not ID. With that said, if the parents didn’t share all the facts or the deputies didn’t do a Terry pat down, that’s concerning. If they had shields outside, why didn’t they base subsequent actions in a similar manner? Somewhere in the middle the truth lies. SO will pay because everyone is 20-20 on law enforcement in hindsight. This looks to me like a combo of lack of communication initially plus failure to act. The second contact was them trying to fix the first failure to act and unfortunately a suicidal man took actions to kill himself.

  8. Manner of death multiple gun shot wounds
    Cause of death: homicide

    Keep in mind that the government is rigged with corrupted people.

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