New York City Reaches $13.7 Million Settlement for Police Response to Protests Over Killing of George Floyd |

New York City Reaches $13.7 Million Settlement for Police Response to Protests Over Killing of George Floyd

New York City has reached a deal with hundreds of George Floyd protesters met with unlawful tactics by local police in 2020.

via: CBS News

Experts say the settlement is among the most expensive in history.

On Thursday, CBS New York heard from plaintiffs, who said they were beaten and arrested during the George Floyd protests in 2020, the movement swept across New York City and the nation that summer, as activists went to the streets to protest violence.

But they say they were met with more violence.

Barbara Ross said she was riding her bike during a peaceful protest, when a police van moved in.

“She was riding right into me, just quickly opened up the door and grabbed my handlebars, and that made me fly because I was going fast,” Ross said.

Ross said she broke her foot during that fall.

Dara Pluchino said she was at a peaceful protest in the Bronx, when the NYPD used a crowd-control technique called “kettling” just before curfews kicked in.

“So when the curfew hit, then mass arrests and violence occurred where police were batoning, were using pepper spray,” Pluchino said.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of more than 1,300 people who are each will likely get nearly $10,000 once the settlement is approved by a judge.

The plaintiffs joined attorneys for a press conference in Foley Square on Thursday.

“Today’s settlement is historic, and I’m very proud that it will bring some sense of justice to nearly 1,400 people who took to the streets and put their bodies on the line against police brutality,” attorney Wylie Stecklow said.

“It’s saying to the city, ‘We made a mistake.’ They might not say it on paper, but they made a mistake, because they wouldn’t be paying this money for it if they didn’t,” Ross said.

Plaintiffs and attorneys in the case say the settlement is just the beginning. They believe the NYPD is in need of deep operational and cultural reform.

“The idea that we keep coming back, year after year, protest after protest, to have to continue to sue the city for the knowing unconstitutional practices of the NYPD is absolutely a disgrace,” attorney David Rankin said.

The city’s Law Department told CBS New York in a statement, “The City and NYPD remain committed to ensuring the public is safe and people’s right to peaceful expression is protected. The NYPD has improved numerous practices to address the challenges it faced at protests during the pandemic. This settlement was in the best interests of all parties.”

There are other lawsuits related to the 2020 protests. Some have already been settled by the city, costing the taxpayers millions of dollars.

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