Chicago Wrongful Death Attorney Comments on $4.5 Million City Settlement
Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) April 4, 2013 – The City of Chicago will pay a $4.5 million settlement to the family of a woman killed by an off-duty police officer.
On March 21, 2012, Rekia Boyd, 22, was shot and killed by off-duty police detective Dante Servin. Nearly a year later, the Chicago City Council’s Finance Committee approved a $4.5 million settlement of the family’s wrongful death case against the city.
“It is tragic that this young woman, an innocent bystander, lost her life,” said Paul Greenberg, a Chicago wrongful death attorney not involved in the case. “One hopes that this settlement will bring some measure of justice and closure to the family.”
Servin was in an unmarked car on the West Side of Chicago when he got into a verbal altercation with a group of people. One of them, Antonio Cross, approached Servin’s vehicle while talking on his cell phone. Servin fired over his shoulder at Cross five times, hitting him in the hand. Another bullet hit Boyd in the head as she turned away from the gunfire. She died 36 hours later.
Servin is still employed by the police department and was given administrative duties after the shooting. Community members and Boyd’s family have called for Servin to be fired and charged with a crime. Cross, on the other hand, received a charge of aggravated assault against Servin, the man who shot him, though the charge was later dismissed.
Police initially alleged that Cross pointed a gun at Servin before the off-duty detective identified himself as a police officer. No weapon was found at the scene, although Cross left the area for a short time after the shooting. Cross said he went to get help and that it would be unreasonable for Servin to mistake his cell phone for a gun since he was holding it to his ear and talking at the time of the shooting. Witnesses at the scene said that they did not hear Servin identify himself as a police officer.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the settlement brings the City of Chicago’s total payouts for police misconduct to nearly $44 million in just the first three months of 2013.
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