Alton Sterling’s family has agreed to a $4.5 million settlement almost six years after he was shot dead by Baton Rouge Police. According to local news station WBRZ 2, the family, their legal team, and the city council all worked hard to come to a final decision. The payout will be initiated with an upfront payment of $1 million taken from East Baton Rouge’s insurance reserve funds.
The Sterling family lawyers issued a statement that confirmed the settlement and what the payment means to the family and the community.
“On behalf of the family of Alton Sterling, we are pleased to announce that we have reached a $4.5 million settlement with the city of Baton Rouge and dismissed our lawsuit against the city and others,” the statement explained.
“This settlement, which was reached through hard work and collaboration between attorneys for Mr. Sterling’s family and the Baton Rouge City Council, will allow the city to heal and provide a pathway for Mr. Sterling’s children to be provided for financially. Additionally, we are grateful for the significant policy changes that have been and will be implemented by the city of Baton Rouge and the Baton Rouge Police Department following Mr. Sterling’s death.”
Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome issued a statement of her own.
“This settlement is an important step for our community. As we move forward, we can continue to focus on priorities within our community, and re-build a stronger foundation for Baton Rouge’s future. As a community, we must work together to implement changes in policy and in our community to ensure that no other families in Baton Rouge will endure this loss, trauma, or heartbreak,” she said according to the news outlet.
Mayor Broome added her “continued sympathy and prayers go out to the Sterling family as they continue to navigate this loss.”
As VIBE previously reported in 2019 the Baton Rouge police chief apologized for hiring the police officer responsible for Sterling’s death. The police officer, Blane Salamoni was fired from the department.
“Baton Rouge, we’re sorry,” said Police Chief Murphy Paul at the time. He remains police chief in the Louisiana capital. “
“The actions and the character of Salamoni do not reflect how BRPD operates as an organization. We are a department committed to healing and to safety.”
According to Police Scorecard, the Baton Rouge Police Department has killed 11 people between 2013 and 2020, all Black people.