A federal judge has denied former Columbus police officer Canyon Boykin’s request to delay a civil suit he filed against the city until after his manslaughter charge goes to trial.
Boykin filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the city after he was fired from the Columbus Police Department following his shooting of Ricky Ball in October 2015. In his suit, Boykin claimed he was acting in self defense when he shot Ball.
A Lowndes County grand jury later indicted Boykin on a manslaughter charge for Ball’s death, and the former officer pleaded not guilty in circuit court on Sept. 9. The same day, Boykin’s attorneys filed a motion for a temporary stay on his wrongful termination suit so that his legal team could focus on the criminal case.
District Judge Sharion Aycock denied the motion Thursday, according to documents filed with the U.S. District Court of Northern Mississippi.
One of Boykin’s attorneys, Jim Waide of Tupelo, did not critique the ruling when The Dispatch contacted him on Saturday.
“She’s a judge,” Waide said of Aycock. “She can handle it whatever way she wants to handle it.”
Boykin shot Ball at about 10 p.m. Oct. 16 following a traffic stop in East Columbus. Ball, a passenger in the vehicle that was stopped, fled on foot and was found minutes later bleeding from two bullet wounds with marijuana and a 9 mm pistol near his body, according to the CPD. The gun had been reported stolen from a police officer’s home.
Neither Boykin nor the two police officers he was with turned on their body cameras before or during the incident.
When the city council fired him two weeks later, it cited Boykin also had an unauthorized passenger riding with him in his patrol car the night of the shooting and he violated the city’s social media policy by making derogatory posts about African Americans, women and disabled people after the incident.
Boykin claimed in his lawsuit against the city that he shot Ball only after Ball pointed a gun at him. Waide argued the city only fired Boykin because he was a white police officer who shot a black man.