Fremont asks court to issue $10 million verdict on behalf of pregnant teen killed by police

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FREMONT (KPIX) — The family of a pregnant teen who was shot and killed by police is shocked that the city of Fremont is asking the court to overturn a $10 million verdict on her behalf.

Elena Mondragon, a resident of Antioch, was shot by Fremont undercover agents in Hayward while sitting in the passenger seat of a BMW. The driver wanted by the police was the intended target.

A jury awarded the 16-year-old’s family a historic $21 million. Fremont had to pay $10 million, but now the city is pushing back, 5 years after the teen’s death.

On Monday, the city said defendants filed a motion to rule as a matter of law and a motion for a retrial in the case Michelle Mondragon against the city of Fremont et al.

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“To say the least, we’re a little bit hurt by it. I mean, it kind of says that there’s still no responsibility for things that happened, we were still a little bit empty as far as I said everyone takes that responsibility for it,” said Mondragon’s uncle Miguel Minjares.

Minjares said learning about the city’s action felt like opening a wound.

“Unfortunately, the city is still burying its head in the sand, kind of an ostrich approach and frankly this is not only to the detriment of Elena’s family, but also our wider community,” said family attorney Adante Pointer. “Because it sends the message that, despite the facts, the jury’s verdict, the law and the public outcry, the city is still unwilling to do the right thing.”

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The family said they learned that the city’s court records said Mondragon was having problems at school.

“Ok, I don’t know what that has to do with her being gone. They’re speculating about the relationship with her and my sister, again I don’t know why that matters, but they had a good relationship,” said Minjares.

Mondragon’s mother Michelle and her brother Minjares described the teen as the backbone of their family.

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“Nothing ever got too crazy for her, nothing ever got too crazy for her. It was always like saying to me, ‘Uncle, I’ve mastered it,’ said Minjares.

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