$1 Million settlement to the family of Ron Settles against the City of Signal hill. Mr. Settles was arrested in June of 1981 and the morning after his arrest his body was found severely beaten. The police claimed that Mr. Settles had hung himself but had no photographic evidence and the officers pleaded their fifth amendment right. A coroner’s inquest determined that he had died at the hands of another.
$4.5 Million settlement for Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt who was wrongfully imprisoned for 27 years before having his case overturned. At the time it was the largest settlement of a civil rights claim arising out of an unconstitutional confinement paid by the United States Government due to the conduct of FBI agents.
$3 Million settlement for the family of a 19-year-old woman who was shot and killed by Riverside police officers. The family had called the police for help when they could not wake her in her vehicle. The case was also the impetus for change in the Riverside Police Department training program.
$1.5 Million settlement for the family of a 13-year-old boy who was fatally shot by the Los Angeles Police Department. The case was also the impetus for change in the Los Angeles Police Department training program.
$1.05 Million unanimous jury verdict for the family of a man who was shot and killed by 2 Long Beach Police Department officers. The officers shot 37 times, striking the victim 19 times with 14 of the shots being in the back.
Undisclosed settlement for the family of a 33-year-old woman who was fatally shot by D.C. Metro Police Department officers while they were attempting to serve an arrest warrant on her companion who did not brandish a weapon at the time of apprehension. During the botched arrest one officer mistook another undercover officer as a suspect and opened fire striking the victim in the process. The case settled during trial after favorable rulings by the Court.
Conviction vacated for wrongfully convicted man in New York. The Brooklyn man spent nearly 25 years in prison, starting in 1996, despite the fact that another man had admitted to the crime and was sent to prison in 2004. He was freed in 2020 and is currently suing the state of New York for $100 million.
$3.75 Million settlement for a 25-year-old man who was severely injured after being struck by a Montgomery County police officer’s vehicle while in pursuit. In addition to the settlement the lawsuit resulted in significant injunctive relief in the form of new training for all officers. The new training includes this specific incident as an example of what not to do in a pursuit. The settlement was also the largest ever in Montgomery County, Maryland for any case type and the largest in the police department’s history.
Undisclosed settlement for the family of a 41-year-old male was fatally shot by an off-duty police officer in D.C. when he refused to show the officer his hand, which was behind his back. The officer indicated the victim made a threatening move toward him and he shot him in the chest. There was no video of the incident and the first trial resulted in a hung jury, 5-2 in favor of the plaintiff. The second trial resulted in a successful verdict.
$2 Million for the family of a man who was fatally shot in Wheaton, Maryland by a Montgomery County police officer. The officer’s gun went off while he was reaching into the victim’s vehicle to remove him. A portion of the settlement went toward programs to foster better race relations between the police and the public.