police brutality lawsuit

NJ County Settles Police Brutality Case for $10M

In what’s supposedly New Jersey’s largest-ever settlement for a police excessive force case, Camden County’s insurance carrier has agreed to pay $10 million to a paralyzed city man who gets round-the-clock nursing home care.

The out-of-court settlement for 28-year-old Xavier Ingram – injured in a 2014 encounter with county metro cops – must be approved by U.S. District Chief Judge Juan Sanchez, who presided over Ingram’s month-long civil case that got declared a mistrial in March due to a hung jury.

This deal riled Camden County officials who are “in complete disagreement,” said spokesman Dan Keashen, explaining “the insurance carrier (is) making a business decision and forcing the hand of Camden County.”

“We will be settling the case with Mr. Ingram, (but) we do not believe this is the right decision,” said Keashen. The county “maintain(s) no wrongdoing took place. It is not liable for any of the actions and

Texas Police Settle $5 Million Wrongful Death Lawsuit Over Black Man Killed While Being Filmed By TV Crew

A police department near Austin, Texas, has settled a wrongful death lawsuit after a Black man named Javier Ambler II died in custody in 2019 as officers filmed for Live PD, a now-cancelled reality television show.

KEY FACTS

The commissioners court in Williamson County, located just north of Austin, voted Tuesday to approve a $5 million settlement in Ambler’s wrongful death lawsuit.

Williamson County will pay $1.6 million of the settlement, while the rest will be covered by the county’s insurance.

Ambler’s family filed the lawsuit in October, alleging that then Sheriff Robert Chody encouraged his officers to engage in “dangerous, high-risk police tactics” because it made for “more entertaining television.” 

TANGENT

Police pursued Ambler in a car chase in March 2019 after he didn’t dim his headlights in the direction of oncoming traffic, according to an investigation by the local station KVUE and the Austin American-Statesman. J.J. Johnson, an officer regularly featured on Live PD, followed Ambler for 22 minutes before Ambler crashed his car just north of downtown Austin. Johnson and another deputy, Zachary Camden, told Ambler to lay on his stomach and tasered him four times in total, as Ambler seemed to resist. Ambler, according to the report, told them he couldn’t breathe and had congestive heart failure before they tasered him a final time. Moments after handcuffing Ambler, they realized he was unresponsive and that his pulse had stopped. Ambler was pronounced dead shortly after at a local hospital. 

Phoenix to pay $5M in lawsuit over man’s death during arrest

The 7-2 vote by the City Council ends the lawsuit by the sister of Muhammad Abdul Muhaymin, who was homeless and suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and schizophrenia.

“Although they (city officials) didn’t acknowledge any specific kind of wrongdoing, the settlement makes a strong statement — and for that reason, I am happy we could move forward,” said Muhaymin’s sister, Mussallina Muhaymin.

City spokesman Dan Wilson declined to comment on the settlement on behalf of the city and police department. Lawyers representing the city had previously denied the lawsuit’s allegations of excessive force and wrongful death.

Read the records of 85,000 cops who were investigated for misconduct

At least 85,000 law enforcement officers across the USA have been investigated or disciplined for misconduct over the past decade, an investigation by USA TODAY Network found.

Officers have beaten members of the public, planted evidence and used their badges to harass women. They have lied, stolen, dealt drugs, driven drunk and abused their spouses.

Despite their role as public servants, the men and women who swear an oath to keep communities safe can generally avoid public scrutiny for their misdeeds.

The records of their misconduct are filed away, rarely seen by anyone outside their departments. Police unions and their political allies have worked to put special protections in place ensuring some records are shielded from public view, or even destroyed.

Reporters from USA TODAY, its affiliated newsrooms across the country and the nonprofit Invisible Institute in Chicago spent more than a year creating the biggest collection of police misconduct records.

Obtained from thousands of state agencies, prosecutors, police departments and sheriffs, the records detail at least 200,000 incidents of alleged misconduct, much of it previously unreported. The records obtained include more than 110,000 internal affairs investigations by hundreds of individual departments and more than 30,000 officers who were decertified by 44 state oversight agencies.

Cost of Police Brutality Cases Soars in Big U.S. Cities

The cost of resolving police brutality lawsuits and police misconduct cases has surged for big U.S. cities in recent years, even before the current wave of scrutiny faced by law-enforcement over tactics.

The 10 cities with the largest police departments paid out $248.7 million last year in settlements and court judgments in police-misconduct cases, up 48% from $168.3 million in 2010, according to data gathered by The Wall Street Journal through public-records requests.

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