A man who safely translated for the US Army in Afghanistan, only to be crippled by the bullets of criminals in Dallas, is suing the people who put him in the American danger zone.
Mahir Amiri came to Dallas with his family after helping Americans in his native country.
Through a translator last year, his wife Zahra Amiri said the father wanted a better life for his children.
The latest news from around North Texas.
“His main concern was the little girl with special needs that he thought he could get some help for,” Zahra Amiri said.
Now the father is paralyzed from the neck down in an Irving nursing home, unable to provide for his family.
Dallas Attorney Charles Bennett represents Mahir Amiri and his family.
“He struggles to speak. He can't really understand. We've had to get a guardianship because multiple doctors have said he's incapacitated from these injuries,” Bennett said
In Dallas, Mahir Amiri worked as a security guard for Agile Security. He was sent to the Texaco store on Ferguson Road near 635 where there was a history of crime.
“Into basically a war zone,” Bennett said.
The lawyer said Amiri was repeatedly threatened by drug dealers at the location before he was shot several times in the back in December 2018.
The City of Dallas has sued the property owners over the years, accusing them of failing to take sufficient action against crime.
“To think that that one person could clean up this mess that these companies have harbored for years was reckless,” Bennett said.
The lawsuit said the firm that hired Amiri had no workman’s comp insurance to cover injuries.
It claims other businesses at the location were also negligent.
Months after the shooting, in June 2019, one drug dealer was still so bold that he was seen counting money in broad daylight beside Ferguson Road in the same place in front of those businesses where Amiri was wounded.
“This is gang territory and it was controlled by these gangs and these businesses are running their businesses within it,” Bennett said.
Since then, the new owners of the adjacent apartment complex hired military-style security to combat the criminals.
Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall selected the Texaco store as the first location for Starlight cameras, which are monitored at headquarters. Police claim the cameras have helped reduce crime.
None of that helps Amiri’s family. His parents also moved to the US with his wife and children.
“He thought it was going to be beneficial to his family and instead he received this fate which is arguably worse than death,” Bennett said.
In court papers, Cliff’s Check Cashing, the one business to respond to the new lawsuit, denied any responsibility for what happened outside.
A person who answered the phone at Agile Security Friday said the matter will be handled in court and the company has no comment.
Hudson Henley, one of the new owners of the adjacent apartment complex, said he and the Texaco store are two of several partners in a new security arrangement that hires off duty sworn peace officers who can make arrests.
Henley said that and other recent arrests by Dallas Police and federal authorities have made an improvement in the crime situation at Ferguson Road near I-635.
Henley said the new security arrangement is expensive.
The Amiri lawsuit seeks money for medical care, lost wages and legal expenses. It asks a jury to determine the amount.