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The law firm founded by the late Johnnie Cochran Jr. has joined the team representing a woman whose toddler was shot to death during in a gunbattle between the child's father and a police SWAT team, according to court papers.

Brian Dunn of The Cochran Firm filed papers this week, saying he has joined attorney Luis Carillo in representing Lorena Lopez.

Carillo filed a wrongful-death lawsuit on Lopez's behalf against the city of Los Angeles, Police Chief William Bratton and other police officers. The Cochran Firm has filed numerous lawsuits against law enforcement, including cases that involved officer shootings.

Nineteen-month-old Suzie Pena was killed by a police bullet as SWAT officers exchanged fire with her father, Jose Raul Pena, in 2005. Authorities said that Pena, who also was killed, used the child as a shield during the gunbattle.

In a court hearing Friday, Superior Court Judge Rolf M. Treu denied Carrillo's motion to review investigative reports and witness statements. Deputy City Attorney Christian Bojorquez had argued the documents were confidential.

The civilian Police Commission last year ruled that two officers who fired their weapons early in the standoff violated the department's use-of-force policy.

The district attorney's office declined to file charges against the officers involved in the standoff and shooting, saying they acted lawfully in defense of themselves and others.


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