Yesterday, the city of New York agreed to pay $3.9 million to the family of an unarmed Bronx teenager shot and killed by an NYPD officer three years ago.
Ramarley Graham, 18, died after Officer Richard Haste shot him in the chest inside of his grandmother's apartment in February 2012. According to the Associated Press, Haste said he opened fire because he feared for his life. A search of the apartment produced no weapons. Although Haste was indicted on manslaughter charges, a judge dismissed them, accusing prosecutors of misleading the grand jury:
Haste was indicted on manslaughter charges in the summer of 2012, but charges were dismissed by a judge who said prosecutors improperly instructed grand jurors to imply they should disregard testimony from police officers that they radioed Haste in advance to warn him that they thought Graham had a pistol. A second grand jury declined to re-indict the officer.
The Associated Press reports that Royce Russell, the Graham's family attorney, said the deal will be formally announced on Monday. Nicholas Paolucci, spokesman for the city's Law Department, told the Associated Press that the settlement was the right decision:
This was a tragic case. After evaluating all the facts, and consulting with key stakeholders such as the NYPD, it was determined that settling the matter was in the best interest of the city.
[via Associated Press]