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Minneapolis to pay $27 million to settle lawsuit from family of George Floyd

Floyd’s death last year sparked protests in Minneapolis and elsewhere around the world.

A mural of George Floyd in the US.
A mural of George Floyd in the US.
Image: PA

THE CITY OF Minneapolis has agreed to pay $27 million (€22.6 million) to settle a civil lawsuit from George Floyd’s family over the black man’s death in police custody.

The Minneapolis City Council emerged from a closed session to announce the settlement, which includes $500,000 (€418,000) for the neighbourhood where Floyd was arrested.

Floyd was declared dead on 25 May 2020 after Derek Chauvin, a former officer who is white, pressed his knee against his neck for about nine minutes.

Floyd’s death sparked protests in Minneapolis and elsewhere around the world, including in Ireland. 

Floyd’s family filed the federal civil rights lawsuit in July against the city, Chauvin and three other fired officers charged in his death.

It alleged the officers violated Floyd’s rights when they restrained him, and that the city allowed a culture of excessive force, racism and impunity to flourish in its police force.

“George Floyd’s horrific death, witnessed by millions of people around the world, unleashed a deep longing and undeniable demand for justice and change,” said Ben Crump, a Floyd family lawyer.

“That the largest pre-trial settlement in a wrongful death case ever would be for the life of a Black man sends a powerful message that Black lives do matter and police brutality against people of color must end.” 

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Floyd’s brother Rodney said the agreement is “a necessary step for all of us to begin to get some closure.”

“George’s legacy for those who loved him will always be his spirit of optimism that things can get better, and we hope this agreement does just that,” he said.

- Additional reporting by AFP.

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