The city of New York will compensate each of the almost 300 people who were allegedly assaulted in 2020.
If approved, the multimillion-dollar payout would be among the biggest amounts ever paid per person in a mass arrest case.
Several protests, like the one in the Bronx, rocked the United States following George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis. Five protesters initiated the class action lawsuit.
After George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police, a class action lawsuit was filed in October 2020. The suit is accusing the NYPD of a “brutal reaction” to a racial justice rally in Bronx.
Documents filed before the court suggested that police employed the practice known as “kettling” on the protestors before detaining them. The police then hit them with batons
According to the lawsuit, the police intervention led to “people getting hurt. Blood was only spilled as a consequence of police “repressing” the protestors. Many demonstrators collapsed or became unconscious and twitched.
The settlement documents state that about 320 people were arrested, detained, or “subjected to force” by police during the incident.
One of the victims said “we had every right to protest, but the City of New York made it apparent that day that the Bronx citizens may be harassed at any moment.”
A total of $21,500 will be paid to “eligible class members who immediately submit claim forms. No one knows how many will actually be able to do so.
Up to $6 might be spent on legal fees
Up to $6 million might be spent on legal fees for the city. Experts speculate that the $21,500 payout is the most ever in a class action lawsuit against a police agency for a widespread incident.
There was a protest in 2000 outside the World Bank and International Monetary Fund buildings in Washington, DC, and as part of a settlement in 2010 for $13.7 million, a federal judge awarded $18,000 to each protester who was arrested.
The settlement is still subject to judicial review. According to Axios, the NYPD indicated that it “remains devoted to consistently enhancing its operations in every aspect conceivable.”
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