Probably not. There are statute of limitations, and more than 2 years have now gone by. Witnesses are gone, evidence is gone, and the time limit may also have passed. If he would going to look into a civil claim, he needed to do so right away, and should have done so as part of the defense to the child neglect charge. As this has nothing to do with child custody or family law matters, I have modified your practice areas so you may perhaps get better responses from civil rights attorneys.
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I agree with Attorney Jill. Most jurisdictions set time limits to bring civil actions. It is now nearly halfway through 2013. Certainly the claim will time barred.
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Wal-Mart breached no duty here. They were actually being extra careful by watching a child closely that wandered off. You have no way of proving that it was racially motivated. Plus, if your friend took a plea bargain in the child neglect case, any claim would be dead in the water.