A Modesto woman has filed a $4.2 million wrongful death lawsuit against several Stanislaus County law enforcement and government agencies for the death of 16-year-old David Siebels in March.
Modesto resident Tammy Lynn Swickard, believed to be a relative, filed the suit Aug. 28 against the Ceres Police Department, the Stanislaus County Jail, the Sheriff's and Probation departments, and the district attorney's office.
The Laub and Laub law firm of South Lake Tahoe filed the suit.
On March 3, Siebels was among three people who were gunned down at a home in the 700 block of North McClure Road near Creekside Golf Course in Modesto. The sole survivor of the attack was Siebels' now 19-year-old sister, who hid in the closet of a bedroom while her brother and friends were killed.
Her name is being withheld because she is the alleged victim of domestic violence.
Also killed in the triple homicide were Edward Reinig, 31, and Alyxandria Tellez, 19.
The lawsuit claims that the Ceres Police Department released the woman's boyfriend, Richard Garcia, 31, also known as Richard Garibay, in early February "knowing he has made threats at his former girlfriend that he would kill her family."
Garcia, 31, has not been arrested or charged in the homicides. He and another man, Armando Osegueda, 30, have been charged for allegedly torturing and imprisoning the female survivor of the slaying from late January to early February in Ceres.
A representative with the Laub and Laub law firm said the claim was made before any charges in the triple homicide because of the six-month time limitation statutes on filing governmental claims.
The case would then move forward when and if criminal charges are filed.
Bee staff writer Marijke Rowland can be reached at email@example.com or (209) 578-2284.