DALLAS — A federal judge has ordered a former Texas police officer to pay $6.3 million to the family of an Iowa man who died in the officer’s custody in 2013.
Judge Roy Payne ruled that Ernesto Fierro used excessive force when he arrested 70-year-old William Livezey Jr. while off-duty in the East Texas town of Malakoff, about 70 miles (113 kilometers) southeast of Dallas.
The judge said in his final judgment Sept. 5 that Livezey suffered a heart attack induced by the arrest.
Livezey was transporting lumber from his business in Taintor, Iowa, to a client in Houston when he encountered Fierro.
Fierro claimed Livezey was driving aggressively, but witnesses said it was Fierro who was operating his motorcycle erratically.
Fierro later was convicted of aggravated assault and fired from the Malakoff police force.