LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - He sat behind bars for years, accused of killing a Louisville teen. Now, charges against Percy Brown are d ropped. In response, Brown is firing back with a lawsuit against several members of the Louisville Metro Police Department, Metro Government and the University of Louisville.
Brown was charged in the 2004 murder of 19-year old Jennifer "Nikki" French in 2008.
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"I don't believe Percy Brown was the shooter," Theresa Jones, French's aunt, said Friday.
It's been 12 years of agony for French's family. They have been waiting for justice, and they are now back to square one.
"It's a roller-coaster ride, and it needs to stop," Jones said. "I feel like we've been wronged by the Commonwealth."
The Commonwealth Attorney's office says the only reason Brown's case was dismissed without prejudice was because the trial judge would not gr ant a continuance it requested due to inability to locate a witness.
Brown was charged in 2008 for French's murder. Police claimed then that he shot her in 2004 to stop her from testifying against him in a forgery and
He has been in-and-out of the courtroom for years. On Friday, he stood alongside his family, friends, faith leaders and attorney.
"Mr. Brown has an impeccable alibi," said Elliot Slosar, Brown's attorney. "He was out of state gambling at a casino and the defendant officers were
aware of this and still kept him incarcerated for nearly a decade of his life."
Brown says his time behind bars is indescribable. He says he has missed out with his children, family, church and community.
"It pains me to revisit some of things I endured while I was there," Brown said. "It is a broken system that needs to be overhauled from top to bottom."
Brown offered his prayers to French's family.
Jones admits that her niece struggled with drugs and criminal activity. She's been raising French's two children, who are now teens. Jones' family has lost faith in the system and they want to know who killed their loved one.
"She was beautiful, smart, (she) loved people, I could go on. Now, she's six feet under and we still don't have answers," Jones said.
The Brown's lawsuit names the person his camp believes is responsible for French's murder. Slosar says that person is already behind bars for an unrelated crime.
WAVE 3 News reached out to LMPD, UofL and the County Attorney for comment, but none responded.
The Commonwealth Attorney's office says once its witness is secured, the case will be reindicted and prosecution will resume.
French's family says they are disappointed that they were never notified that Brown was released from jail in April. They say they found out from Brown's attorney's office, which contacted them.