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Widow Sues Theater Employee, Company Over Pasco Co. Shooting Death

Brendan Fitterer
AP Photo
Nicole Oulson (center) at a Feb. 2014 hearing for Curtis Reeves, who's accused of shooting Nicole's husband, Chad, during an argument in a Dade City movie theater.

The widow of a Florida man shot and killed during an argument over texting during movie previews has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the theater, its developer and one of its employees.

Nicole Oulson seeks more than $15,000 and a jury trial. According to the lawsuit filed in Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Court in Dade City, she suffered physical, psychological and economic damage.

Curtis Reeves, 73, is charged with second-degree murder in Chad Oulson's death and aggravated battery for shooting Nicole Oulson in the hand.

The lawsuit states Cobb Theaters and Thomas Peck, an employee at the Wesley Chapel movie theater, failed to enforce the company's prohibition on weapons.

Pasco County Sheriff officials say Reeves complained to theater management about Chad Oulson's cellphone use during a movie preview January 13, 2014.

A security video shows that when Reeves returned to his seat, Oulson, 43, grabbed Reeves' popcorn and threw it at him. Reeeves then fired one shot, hitting Nicole Oulson in the hand before the bullet struck her husband in the chest.

Reeves is claiming self-defense, using Florida's "stand your ground" law. A judge will rule on that claim in April or May.

Mark Schreiner is the assistant news director and intern coordinator for WUSF News.
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