Lawyer: Family got 'transformational' settlement

05 Mai, 2019, 06:55 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Lawyer: Family got 'transformational' settlement

Ms Damond's father, John Ruszczyk, and brother Jason are satisfied with the payment because it would be "transformational" in forcing change to policing in the USA city, the family's lawyer says.

The family was to donate US$2 million of that money to a fund to fight gun violence in Minneapolis.

Damond was shot when she approached a police squad vehicle just minutes after calling 911 to report a possible rape behind her home.

Bennett says the officer's conviction didn't play a big role in the settlement coming together so soon after a verdict.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said Friday the city reached a $20 million agreement with the family of Justine Ruszczyk to settle a lawsuit stemming from her 2017 killing by Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor.

The family of murdered Australian life coach and yoga instructor Justine Ruszczyk Damond will receive a record $US20 million ($A29 million) in a settlement from the city of Minneapolis.

She had called police to report a possible rape in the dark alley behind her home.

"This is not a victory for anyone, but rather a way for our city to move forward", said Mayor Frey.

According to jail records, Noor was released from the jail at 6 p.m., two days after he was found guilty of third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Damond's death.

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Former Minneapolis Police officer Mohamed Noor leaves the Hennepin County Government Center during a break from his trial on April 1, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Officer Ngo was shot by another officer, who mistook him for a fleeing suspect.

Noor testified that he fired to protect them from a perceived threat.

Damond's family had filed a lawsuit seeking more than $50 million, alleging that her civil rights were violated. Jurors took nearly 12 hours to reach a verdict after hearing three weeks of testimony.

"Quiet satisfaction", the family's Minneapolis lawyer Bob Bennett said in describing the Ruszczyks' reaction to the settlement.

The Somali-American, who had trained to become a police officer in a mid-career switch, was sacked after he was charged.

The death of Damond, 40, came a month before she was due to marry. He will learn his sentence on June 7. He was found not guilty of the most serious charge, second-degree murder.

Noor said his partner, Officer Matthew Harrity, shouted "Oh Jesus!" and fumbled with his gun in its holster before "he turned to me with fear in his eyes". Noor refused to talk to investigators.

Ms. Damond's death angered and bewildered citizens in the US and Australia, and led to the resignation of Minneapolis' police chief. It also led the department to change its policy on body cameras. Damond was white, and Noor is Somali American, leading some in the community to question whether the case was treated the same as police shootings involving black victims.



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