The city of New York is poised to settle a lawsuit brought against them by protesters in the Bronx over the New York Police Department tactics involving “kettling” at a protest for George Floyd in 2020.
According to reports, the city is preparing to pay a large sum of money to settle a class action suit brought on by individuals who were part of a racial justice protest in the Mott Haven neighborhood in the Bronx on June 4, 2020. In the documents filed in federal court, the sum ranges between $4 million and $6 million. Each person of the hundreds involved could receive $21,500. Those who were issued desk appearance summons could net an additional $2,500, and the plaintiffs named who brought the suit could get another $21,500.
The city will also shell out $2,550,000 to pay the fees of the attorneys involved. Amali Sierra, one of the lead plaintiffs, spoke about the settlement in a statement: “This settlement serves as testimony of the wrongdoing by the hands of the NYPD. It is a reminder that this institution is not built to protect Black and Brown communities.”
Sierra and her sister, Samira, were among the group of over 300 people protesting the death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota. At the direction of then-Chief of Department Terence Monahan in coordination with the NYPD’s legal team, officers on the scene at E.136th Street cornered the protesters preventing them from leaving until after the imposed 8 p.m. curfew that was in effect at the time.
NYPD officers then proceeded to pepper spray the protesters and strike them with batons before arresting them en masse. Legal observers from the Legal Aid Society and the National Lawyers Guild were also detained and handcuffed along with those passing by. The Legal Aid Society sent out word of the incident via Twitter at the time, which was responded to with video footage.
A spokesperson for the NYPD issued a statement denying any wrongdoing by the department: “It was a challenging moment for the department as officers who themselves were suffering under the strains of a global pandemic did their utmost to help facilitate people’s rights to peaceful expression while addressing acts of lawlessness including wide-scale rioting, mass chaos, violence, and destruction.”
The spokesperson followed up by adding that they’ve “re-envisioned” their policies since 2020. The news comes as the city is currently seeking to settle more lawsuits over the department’s behavior that year.
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NYC To Settle Lawsuit Over 2020 NYPD Kettling Of George Floyd Protesters was originally published on hiphopwired.com
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