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The family of George Floyd has reached a settlement with the city of Minneapolis for $27 million, weeks before the trial of his alleged killer Derek Chauvin is set to begin. It’s the largest payout regarding a wrongful death settlement in city history.

Chauvin is charged with second and third-degree murder in the Memorial Day 2020 killing of Floyd, sparking a global protest and a large conversation surrounding Black Lives Matter, over-policing and more.

The Minneapolis City Council unanimously approved the settlement on Friday (March 12), including a $500,000 contribution from Floyd’s Family to the community at the intersection of 38th and Chicago Avenue, now known as George Floyd Square.

In July 2020, Floyd’s family filed a federal lawsuit against the city as well as the officers involved in the arrest which led to his death. The lawsuit centered around neck restraints, police policies and training. It sought “compensatory and special damages” in an amount to be determined by a jury.

Benjamin Crump, the Floyd family’s attorney, said in an interview Friday Minneapolis needed to “exhibit responsible leadership” in the wake of Floyd’s death and the subsequent trial for Chauvin, where barbed wire barricades have been erected. The trial is currently in the jury selection phase.

“The city needs to exhibit responsible leadership in the face of the horrific tragedy that really was a watershed moment for America,” Crump said.

He added in a statement, “George Floyd’s horrific death, witnessed by millions of people around the world, unleashed a deep longing and undeniable demand for justice and change. That the largest pre-trial settlement in a wrongful death case ever would be for the life of a Black man sends a powerful message that Black lives do matter and police brutality against people of color must end.”

Floyd’s sister Bridgett added, “This part of our tragic journey to justice for my brother George is resolved … Our family suffered an irreplaceable loss May 25 when George’s life was senselessly taken by a Minneapolis police officer. While we will never get our beloved George back, we will continue to work tirelessly to make this world a better, and safer, place for all.”

Previously the city paid a $20 million settlement to the family of Justine Ruszczyk Damond in 2019. Damond, a white woman, was shot and killed by former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor after she called to report an assault behind her home. Noor was found guilty of third-degree murder and manslaughter in the case and was sentenced to 12 and a half years in prison.

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