The attorneys for Sterling’s five children released a statement where they expressed hope that the settlement “will allow the city to heal and provide a pathway for Mr. Sterling’s children to be provided for financially.” His kids will receive $1 million upfront, with the remaining sum coming in equal installments over the next four years.
In 2017, Sterling’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the city of Baton Rouge, its police department, and former police chief. Officers Howie Lake and Blane Salamoni, who were included in the suit, were responding to a call on July 5, 2016 from an anonymous person who alleged that a man threatened and brandished a handgun while selling CDs outside of a convenience store. The officers tasered Sterling when he refused to cooperate, and during a struggle to subdue him, even though he was already on the ground, Salamoni claimed that Sterling was reaching for a gun before firing six times within close range.
In May 2018, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry determined that Lake and Salamoni would not be charged for Sterling’s death since they acted in a “reasonable and justifiable manner.” Despite the ruling, Salamoni was fired a few days later “based on the actions of the officers” in the incident, according to Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul. After appealing the decision, Salamoni was given the opportunity to retroactively resign. Lake was suspended three days, but never charged.