ShareThis Page
Allegheny

Antwon Rose's parents sue Pitt for not disciplining, divulging record of officer Michael Rosfeld

Megan Guza
| Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, 2:51 p.m.

The parents of Antwon Rose II, an unarmed teenager shot and killed by former East Pittsburgh police Officer Michael Rosfeld, have sued the University of Pittsburgh claiming it failed to disclose Rosfeld’s alleged misconduct while he was a university cop.

The lawsuit filed on behalf of Michelle Kenney and Antwon Rose Sr. alleges negligence and misrepresentation on the part of the university. It contends that since Rosfeld’s October 2012 hiring by Pitt police, he “continuously performed false arrests, assaulted individuals and falsified records.”

Attorneys with Rabner Law Offices, who are representing the parents, initially argued in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court that they were entitled to pre-complaint discovery — evidence that plaintiffs believe will be necessary for filing the lawsuit. Judge Robert Colville denied the motion.

“Despite Rosfeld’s overzealous and combative behaviors, unbecoming of a police officer, (Pitt) failed to discipline him — whether counseling, suspension or termination,” the lawsuit alleged.

Attorneys for the university could not immediately be reached for comment

Rosfeld and the university had previously faced a lawsuit filed by two men who said the officer assaulted and falsely arrested them during his time with the university police.

Jacob Schilling and Timothy Riley filed the lawsuit in July, two weeks after the East Pittsburgh shooting. It claimed that Rosfeld falsely arrested the pair outside Oakland’s Garage Door Saloon in December 2017. Riley, Schilling and two others were asked to leave the bar — without reason, according to the lawsuit — and were allegedly accosted and arrested by Rosfeld. Those charges were later dropped.

That lawsuit was dropped last week. The Rose family’s lawsuit mentions the Garage Door incident.

“This is only one example of the many instances where Rosfeld falsified documents, criminal complaints, arrest warrants and other behaviors that were overzealous and unbecoming of which resulted in the filing of criminal charges,” the lawsuit alleged.

The lawsuit contends that Rosfeld’s leaving the university police in January was a direct result of the false allegations in the Oakland arrest, and he was “permitted by (the university) to resign and/or (be) fired …”

The complaint said that by allegedly allowing Rosfeld to leave Pitt quietly, the university “avoided raising red flags to future employers,” and he was easily able to gain employment with the East Pittsburgh police, where he was working as an officer when he shot and killed Rose.

The Rose lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of money in damages.

Megan Guza is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Megan at 412-380-8519, mguza@tribweb.com or via Twitter @meganguzaTrib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me