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Victim's family files wrongful death lawsuit after shooting at Beaumont apartment complex

Kera Teel
Kera Teel
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The family of Kera Teel, the pregnant mother who was killed at the Sienna Apartments last month, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the apartment complex, citing its faulty security systems and unwillingness to repair them until after Teel's death.

Teel was seven months pregnant when she was gunned down June 6. Her baby, Kyndal Jae Teel, was delivered after the shooting but did not survive.

Two have been arrested in connection to the shooting.

Police say Jared Javon Bias, 22, and 17-year-old Atayanna Douglas, played a role in the death on Beaumont's North End. Douglas indicated to Beaumont Police Department detectives she was present when Bias pulled the trigger, according to a probable cause affidavit supporting Bias' arrest last month.

In the lawsuit, filed Thursday by Kera's husband Andrew Teel, the apartment's managers are accused of failing to repair "collapsed security fences and recurrently dysfunctional security gates."

"The Defendants also failed to replace defective security lights in the parking lot and common areas," the lawsuit states. "As a result, Sienna Apartment Homes naturally attracted criminals. According to Beaumont Police Department dispatch records, the police responded to at least 58 calls to the Sienna Apartment Homes that resulted in 11 police reports in the mere six months prior to June 6th. During that time, tenant complaints were made to management with no substantive response, answer, or action."

But within days of Kera Teel's death, the lawsuit claims, Sienna Apartment homes fixed security gates that had been broken; fences that had been in disrepair; and security lights around the complex, which had been out of service.

The lawsuit states there were no security cameras on at the apartments, despite roughly 200 units at an average monthly rate of $1,000.

The lawsuit seeks more than $1 million.

KFDM/KBTV is still waiting to hear back from the defendants.

Three days after the shooting, Sienna Apartment Homes management released a statement expressing condolences to the Teel family and saying it would "fully with local law enforcement officials to assist in any way we can."

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