St. Louis, MO – The mother of the St. Louis police officer who was killed by her on-duty police boyfriend during a game of Russian roulette in January has filed a wrongful death lawsuit.
It claims that the officer who killed Officer Alix, Officer Nathaniel Hendren, had a “complicated psychiatric history” before he ever became a police officer.
Wahlers’ suit alleges that Officer Hendren had a history of forcing his girlfriends to play Russian roulette.
It also says that the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department should have known Officer Hendren had psychiatric problems when they hired him, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Officer Alix, 24, was fatally shot just before 1 a.m. on Jan. 24 while visiting her boyfriend, Officer Hendren, and his partner, Officer Patrick Riordan, at Officer Hendren’s apartment in the 700-block of Dover Place while the two men were on duty.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that Officer Alix was off-duty when she met the two men after night shift roll call to socialize.
According to Officer Riordan, Officer Alix and Officer Hendren were “consuming alcohol beverages and playing with their off-duty weapons,” KMOV reported.
While at the house, Officer Hendren grabbed a revolver that was not a department-issued weapon, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Officer Riordan told police that Officers Hendren and Alix engaged in a game of Russian roulette, and that he reminded the two that they were police officers, shouldn't be playing with guns, and said he wanted no part of it.
He said he started to leave when Officer Hendren took the gun and pulled the trigger while it was pointed at Officer Alix's chest.
That time, the gun fired, striking Officer Alix in the chest.
The on-duty officers sent out an “officer in need of aid” alert, and rushed Officer Alix to St. Louis University Hospital where she was pronounced dead, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
While at the hospital, Officer Hendren head-butted the back windshield of a police SUV, breaking it, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
He also “spontaneously stated to his supervisor… that he did not try and kill the victim because he was in love with her and they were in an intimate relationship and were planning on moving into his apartment,” court documents read, according to KMOV.
Officer Hendren was charged the next day with involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action for his involvement in Officer Alix’s death.
Wahlers’ lawsuit claims that neighbors heard a “screaming fight” just before they heard a gunshot, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The suit also alleges that Officer Hendren had made other women he’d been involved with engage in sexual activity that involved firearms.
It also claims that the officer who killed Officer Alix had a history of psychiatric issues that included anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and "suicidal ideations and gestures," before he was hired by the St. Louis police, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The lawsuit also said that Officer Hendren was known to put his loaded gun in his mouth or to his head on occasion “when alone, just to feel something."
Officers Hendren and Riordan, as well as their supervisor, Sergeant Gary Foster, and the city of St. Louis are named as defendants in Wahlers’ wrongful death lawsuit, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The lawsuit contains numerous previously-unreleased details about what happened the night that Officer Alix was killed by Officer Hendren, as well as a different account of the shooting.
"Officer Alix, who was off duty, was intoxicated and vulnerable," according to the complaint.
Wahlers’ lawsuit alleges that after neighbors heard screaming, Officer Hendren pulled out his revolver and fired empty shots down the hall before putting a single bullet into the gun and pointing it at Officer Alix’s chest, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Then the suit claims Officer Hendren fatally shot Officer Alix while Officer Riordan watched and did nothing to intervene.
Officer Alix’s mother’s lawsuit said that Officer Hendren carried Officer Alix out to the patrol car to take her to the hospital, but dropped her multiple times on the way, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The lawsuit also said that Officer Alix was "for an unknown reason" naked from the waist up with her sports bra pulled up over her head when the officers delivered her to the emergency room.
The complaint also pointed out that St. Louis police didn’t have Officer Hendren’s blood alcohol level checked until two hours after Officer Alix was killed, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Officer Hendren’s attorney has continued to call Officer Alix’s death a “tragic accident” and said the lawsuit was filled with “all sorts of inaccuracies and misstatements.”