Legal filing in death of BPD Officer Craig Lehner

'Notice of claim' is first step in expected legal action

January 26, 2018 - 8:25 pm

Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) - Criminal defense attorney and WBEN legal analyst Paul Cambria is not surprised that the family of fallen Buffalo Police diver Craig Lehner has filed a 'notice of claim' against the City of Buffalo and Buffalo Police Department. WBEN has confirmed the filing with the city. Lehner died during an underwater recovery training mission in the Niagara River in October after he went missing and his remains were located days later.

Camrbria tells WBEN the legal filing is the first step in a likely lawsuit to be filed and needed to be on the record within ninety days of the incident.

"When you sue a municipality as opposed to a private individual or company, you have to file a notice of claim first", Cambria said.

Cambria says the filing makes way for a formal lawsuit which could be filed within three years of the incident. 

As for the grounds for an expected lawsuit, Camrbia says, "they may take the position that there was negligence involved in the rescue". 

Lehner was 34 years old and was a nine year veteran of the Buffalo Police Department, serving in the K-9 and Underwater Recovery units.

Lehner's death is being investigated by the Buffalo Police Homicide unit.

AUDIO:  Legal Analyst Paul Cambria

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