Philando Castile's family awarded $3m settlement over police killing

It was just the latest incident to involve the fatal shooting of a black suspect by police

Andrew Buncombe
New York
@AndrewBuncombe
Monday 26 June 2017 19:15
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Picture: Philando Castile/Facebook
Picture: Philando Castile/Facebook

The family of a black motorist killed by a Minnesota police officer and whose shooting death was streamed live by his girlfriend, has reached a $3m settlement with the city that employed the policeman.

The arrangement between the family of Philando Castile and the city of St Anthony, means that the parties will avoid a wrongful death lawsuit that could have taken years to resolve.

The settlement to be paid to Valerie Castile, the dead man's mother and the family’s trustee, was announced on Monday and comes less than two weeks after officer Jeronimo Yanez was acquitted of manslaughter and other charges connected to the 32-year-old's death, the Associated Press said.

Dashboard camera footage released by Minnesota authorities shows the moment Philando Castile was shot

Mr Castile, an elementary school cafeteria worker, was shot five times by Mr Yanez during a traffic stop after Mr Castile told the officer he was armed and that he had a permit for his gun.

The shooting gained international attention after Mr Castile’s girlfriend, who was in the car with her four-year-old daughter, livestreamed the aftermath on Facebook.

The acquittal of Mr Yanez, who is Latino, prompted days of protests, including one in St Paul that ended with 18 arrests.

Police officer seen pushing, slapping teen in Richfield, Minnesota

“No amount of money could ever replace Philando,” said a joint statement from the family’s lawyers and the city of St Anthony said.

“With resolution of the claims the family will continue to deal with their loss through the important work of the Philando Castile Relief Foundation.”

After Mr Yanez’s acquittal, the city of St Anthony said it was offering Yanez a “voluntary separation agreement” from the police department, and he would no longer be an on-duty officer.

The settlement happened faster than several others stemming from the killings of black men by police officers. Last week, a $1.5m settlement was reached in the case of Michael Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old who was killed by a white officer in Ferguson, Missouri. That settlement came nearly three years after the death of Mr Brown, whose parents sued the city.

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