Judge: Former UAH President Won’t be Added as Defendant in Lawsuit Over Bishop Shooting

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David Williams (Courtesy: The Huntsville Times/al.com)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Madison County Circuit Judge Ruth Ann Hall has denied a motion to add former UAH President David Williams as a defendant in the wrongful death lawsuits from the 2010 campus shooting, according to our news partners at The Huntsville Times and al.com.

The families of Dr. Maria Ragland Davis and Dr. Adriel Johnson, killed by Amy Bishop in February 2010, are suing former Provost Vistasp Karbhari.  The attorneys for the two families sought to add Williams to the suit, claiming that both he and Karbhari were seen and potentially caught on university surveillance video fleeing from the back of Shelby Hall with two armed guards in November 2009, after they learned Bishop wanted to meet with them about her tenure denial.

The plaintiffs claim both men knew Bishop was a danger and considered her a safety threat.

In the September hearing, Hall threw out an affidavit given by Bishop to her lawyers that said University of Alabama in Huntsville officials feared her enough to flee the administration building.

Bishop’s affidavit came into question for reasons of competency and credibility.  Judge Hall granted the defense’s motion to strike Bishop’s affidavit, calling it “defective and completely inadmissible.”

Hall ruled in September that the trail for the suit will tentatively start on April 7, 2014.  There will first be another hearing for motions on December 12, 2013 at 10:00 a.m.

Amy Bishop pleaded guilty to capital murder and is serving a life sentence at Tutwiler Prison for Women in Wetumpka.

Williams stepped down as UAH’s president in March 2011.  He is now Dean of the College of Engineering at Ohio State University.

Karbhari is now president at the University of Texas Arlington.  A motion filed on his behalf says Karbhari proclaims himself to be an “innocent man.”  Karbhari says there is no basis for the lawsuit.