The family of Philando Castile, the Minnesota man fatally shot by a police officer during a July 2016 traffic stop, reached a settlement of nearly $3 million with the city that employed the officer at the time, both sides announced Monday.
The announcement marks the latest financial settlement to follow a deadly police shooting that spurred criminal charges but not a conviction. It was announced a week and a half after the officer, Jeronimo Yanez, was acquitted in the fatal shooting, the aftermath of which was streamed on Facebook Live and seen worldwide.
Valerie Castile, the driver’s mother, will receive $2.995 million as part of the settlement, she said in a joint statement with the city of St. Anthony, Minn.
“The city and [Valerie Castile] were able to reach this agreement avoiding a federal civil rights lawsuit which may have taken years to work its way through the courts exacerbating the suffering of the family and of the community,” the statement said. Castile’s family had previously said they planned to file a lawsuit.
According to the statement, the settlement will be paid through St. Anthony’s coverage with the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust, and no taxpayer funds from the city itself will be used to pay for it.
Yanez had said he feared for his life during the encounter, which began as a routine traffic stop in the Twin Cities area. After being pulled over, Castile told Yanez that he had a firearm on him. What happened next was captured in a graphic dashboard-camera video recording released last week: Yanez yelled at Castile not to “pull it out,” and Castile said he was not, which his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, echoed from the passenger seat.
Yanez, who said afterward that he thought Castile was pulling out his gun, thrust his own weapon into the car and fired a series of shots, fatally wounding Castile.
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SOURCE: The Washington Post, Mark Berman