Knox family drops lawsuit against THP trooper in son's death

Knox family drops lawsuit against THP trooper in son's death

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"At this point, for us to pursue it further, it would make us look vindictive and mean and greedy. That's never what this has been about," Tim Anito said. "At this point, for us to pursue it further, it would make us look vindictive and mean and greedy. That's never what this has been about," Tim Anito said.
Kyle Anito (source: family) Kyle Anito (source: family)
Charles Morgan (source: Tennessee Department of Safety) Charles Morgan (source: Tennessee Department of Safety)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A Knox County family has decided to drop a civil lawsuit that was filed after their son was killed in a crash during a chase by a former Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper.

Gordon Kyle Anito, 20, died in a fiery crash into a tree in November 2011. He had been chased on Andersonville Pike by Trooper Charles Morgan just before he crashed.

According to a THP investigation, Trooper Morgan failed to stop and give aid when Anito's car crashed.

Morgan's in-cruiser video showed he came up on the crashed car, slowed down and did not stop. Instead, he drove past the car, ended his pursuit and pulled over.

Morgan was eventually seen in the video spraying a fire extinguisher on the wreck, but flames had engulfed the car.

"At the point when we found out about the video, it was a choice of we could do nothing. Absolutely nothing or we could take the only legal action available to us, which was the civil suit. Its purpose was the bring light on what happened," said Tim Anito, Kyle's father.

Anito's family had filed a civil suit against Morgan, but Tim Anito said Monday the family decided to drop it. He said the only thing the suit would have accomplished was to take Morgan's home and that wasn't what the family wanted.

"Everything that has happened to [Trooper Morgan] has been done by the Highway Patrol. So the lawsuit has fulfilled its purpose as it brought this to light. At this point, for us to pursue it further, it would make us look vindictive and mean and greedy. That's never what this has been about," Anito said.

Anito also said THP handled the matter with Morgan professionally, dismissed him and upheld his dismissal.

Now that the suit has be dropped, the Anito family says they are trying to get back to a new normal. They are hoping to be able to move forward and remember their son, brother and friend who was gone too soon.

"Because he was consumed in the fire, our memory of him will be of a happy, handsome 20 year old with his life ahead of him," Anito said. "Loved by his family, loved his family back, loved by his friends."

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