SEATTLE — Lawyers for Lakewood police are asking a federal judge to overturn a $15.1 million civil-rights verdict in a lawsuit over the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man.

The Seattle Times reports ( ) the police department’s lawyers argued that the jury reached their conclusion because the court allowed the lawyer representing Leonard Thomas’ family to “play the race card.” Thomas died in 2013 after being shot by a SWAT sniper as police were responding to a family argument out of Thomas’s Fife home.

Lakewood police’s lawyer Jeremy Culumber asks the judge to grant the city a new trial or reduce the amount of damages by more than $12 million.

Information from: The Seattle Times,