Convicted bank robber files $6.3M suit against county

EVERETT — A convicted bank robber has filed a lawsuit against Snohomish County, claiming that a sheriff’s deputy used excessive force by shooting him three years ago.

Todd Kirkpatrick, 57, was known as the “Phony Pony Bandit,” a serial bank robber, before his arrest in Stanwood in 2012. The lawsuit follows a claim he sent the county earlier this year, seeking $6.3 million in damages.

“This is a ridiculous lawsuit,” Sheriff Ty Trenary said Friday.

The county has reviewed the paperwork, said Jason Cummings, the chief civil deputy prosecuting attorney.

“We believe it to be frivolous and we’ll defend the county and look forward to having the court dismiss this matter,” Cummings said.

The lawsuit does not name a dollar amount being sought. It names as defendants the county, the city of Stanwood, the deputy who shot Kirkpatrick and the deputy’s wife, as well as other, unnamed deputies. The city of Stanwood contracts with the sheriff’s office for police services. City officials declined to comment Friday.

Kirkpatrick is serving a 17-year sentence at the Clallam Bay Corrections Center. He is represented by Spokane attorney Dennis Clayton. Clayton on Thursday said he was going out of town and didn’t have time to comment.

An updated version of the complaint was filed Oct. 13 in Snohomish County Superior Court. Kirkpatrick was carrying an unloaded gun when deputy Dan Scott confronted him mid-robbery at the KeyBank in Stanwood. Kirkpatrick denies reports that he pointed the gun at Scott before the deputy opened fire. He was shot again while on the ground. The lawsuit accuses Scott of excessive force and “common law assault and battery.” The lawsuit says Scott was improperly trained by the sheriff’s office.

In earlier paperwork, Kirkpatrick wrote that his medical bills from the gunshot wounds amounted to more than $300,000, and that other police officers failed to stop Scott “from trying to execute me.”

Kirkpatrick, who is from Anacortes, was called the “Phony Pony Bandit” because of a wig he wore during heists. He was convicted of four robberies in all.

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