State‘s Attorney says no police conspiracy in Redding man’s death
DANBURY — State’s Attorney Stephen J. Sedensky III on Friday refuted claims made in a lawsuit suggesting Redding police conspired to suppress the truth about the 2014 death of Gugsa Abraham “Abe” Dabela.
“Although the investigation is not yet complete, it has revealed no evidence of any conspiracy on the part of the Redding Police Department,” Sedensky said in a statement.
Dabela was found in his overturned car in April 2014 with a single gunshot wound to the head. The medical examiner’s office ruled the death a suicide.
Dabela’s family believes police failed to property investigate the case and that he likely was murdered. They also claim Dabela’s civil rights were violated in earlier dealings with the department.
The suit, filed by Dabela’s father and his estate, names the town, Chief of Police Doug Fuchs, seven officers and “Killer John Doe” as the defendants.
The lawsuit claims the defendants conspired to cover up a murder and sought to keep the killer’s identity unknown, and also violated Dabela’s rights of due process and equal protection when he was applying for his gun permit three years ago.
The family hired its own investigators, attorneys and specialists to review the circumstances of the case. The Connecticut NAACP launched an investigation last summer at the request of the family, but no conclusions have been released.
“We again express our sincere condolences to the family of Mr. Dabela on their loss,” Sedensky said, but he firmly rejected the suggestion that police conduct was anything but professional.
“The Redding Police Department has cooperated fully with the Office of the State’s Attorney and the State Police throughout this investigation, as well as cooperating with the forensic expert retained by the Dabela family in 2014,” Sedensky said.
Sedensky said the investigation into Dabela’s death continues. Anyone with any information concerning the case is asked to contact the Danbury State’s Attorney’s Office at 203-207-8670.