The family of a Matthews man, who was gunned down last July, is suing the apartment complex where the killing happened citing “negligent security.”
“Each day that goes by is just one day further from the last time I saw him,” said Scott Swierski. “I haven’t seen him in over seven months and it kills men.”
Swierski’s 20-year-old son Jonathan was shot to death on July 6 at the Paces Pointe Apartments in Matthews. The shooter told 911 he shot Jonathan “on accident.”
In September, Matthews police closed the case without an arrest after consulting with the Mecklenburg County District Attorney. Investigators blamed the killing on an “unintentional discharge” that occurred during an altercation in which several people, including Jonathan, were present.
The exact circumstances of what took place remain unclear.
“We’re getting by day-by-day,” said Swierski, in tears. “But the fact is life sucks. It’s terrible. It’s depressing. It’s dark. It’s not the happy life it was prior to him.”
Swierski and his wife, Dawn, have hired an attorney and are now suing the apartment complex citing a lack of security and lightning to deter crime despite “a high level of criminal activity.”
“If they had better security it wouldn’t have happened,” said Swierski.
The family is seeking unspecified compensation for pain and suffering, funeral expenses and the income Jonathan would have earned over the course of his lifetime.
Dallas-based Highmark Residential, LLC, which owns the Paces Pointe Apartments, did not respond to requests for comment.
By filing the lawsuit, the family now has access to the entire Matthews Police case file. FOX 46 has not seen the contents but Swierski and his attorney have. They believe investigators had enough evidence to make an arrest for involuntary manslaughter.
“We’re confident criminal charges should have been brought against our son’s killer,” said Swierski. “There’s just information in the file that points in that direction.”
Swierski would not elaborate. He says he has not ruled out filing a civil lawsuit against the shooter, and others, if criminal charges are not filed.
“I’m seeking justice for my son,” said Swierski. “I will do what I need to do to see that justice is done.”
Matthews Police previously said they did not charge the shooter with involuntary manslaughter because investigators could not prove he intentionally pointed his gun.
“There has not been any new evidence collected in that case,” said Matthews Police spokesman Ofc. Tim Aycock. “We wouldn’t have any further comment at this time.”
The district attorney’s office did not respond to a request for comment.