Attorneys for victim’s family, officer charged in fatal Modesto police shooting speak out

Attorneys for victim's family, officer charged in fatal Modesto police shooting speak out

MODESTO, Calif. (KTXL) – It has been more than two months since Trevor Seever was shot and killed.

Modesto Police Officer Joseph Lamantia was released and charged with voluntary manslaughter in connection with the shooting in mid-March.

“It was painful,” said Bob Fores, the Seever family attorney. “They had hope but no specific expectations of what might happen. When that information came out, they were extremely emotional.”

Fores told FOX40 that while the family appreciates what has happened so far, the charge should be more serious.

“The family certainly wishes the charges were more serious, such as murder,” Fores said.

The Modesto officer fired and was charged with manslaughter after being fatally shot

Immediately after the charges against Lamantia, Stanislaus prosecutors pleaded not guilty.

Lamantia attorney Paul Goyette told FOX40 that his client did nothing wrong.

“He did his job. He did his job in harmony with his education. We believe this is an entirely defensible shootout involving an officer, ”said Goyette.

When Seever was shot, he was unarmed.

“It doesn’t matter whether he had a gun or not. It’s the threat he posed and what the officer knew at the time, ”Goyette said.

By the time Seever died, Lamantia was involved in five other shootings during his 12-year career. Four of the five shootings were fatal.

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“All the shootings that officers were involved in and that we are all familiar with were justified,” Goyette said.

A spokesman for Modesto Police Department tells FOX40 that Lamantia has been cleared for three of the shootings and one is still under investigation.

The Seever family said they will have a hard time trusting law enforcement, but the allegations Lamantia faces are a start in their healing process.

“There’s a sense of relief, a sense of peace,” Fores said.

Lamantia faces up to 11 years’ imprisonment if convicted of voluntary manslaughter.

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