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Indianapolis pays $650K to the family of slain unarmed black man

INDIANAPOLIS – The city of Indianapolis has agreed to pay $650,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of an unarmed black man, two police officers fatally shot last year after he crashed with his car during a police chase, documents released Tuesday show.

The settlement agreement released by Indianapolis’ corporation counsel advocates for the city to make the payment to lawyers for Aaron Bailey’s family. The five page document was signed Monday by the city’s chief litigation council and the Bailey family lead attorney.

Under the settlement, Bailey’s family has agreed to drop the federal lawsuit which they filed in September against the city, the police and the Officers Michal Dinnsen and Carlton Howard.

Their suit claims that Bailey, 45, posed no threat to the officers when they fatally shot him in June 2017. It also claims the officers used excessive force and violation of Bailey’s constitutional rights when they shot him four times after he crashed with his car against a tree after a short chase that began when he flew away from the traffic stop.

No gun was found in Bailey’s car.

Both Howard, who is biracial, and Dinnsen, who is white, said repeatedly under oath that Bailey had ignored their commands to show his hands after he crashed with his car.

She told a civilian police merit board in May that she believed that Bailey was looking for a gun when he was in his car’s center console after the crash. That panel cleared both officers of wrongdoing in Bailey’s killing after a three-day hearing.

The board’s decision came eight months after a special prosecutor appointed to the recording declined in October to file criminal charges against either officer, the mention of their claims of self-defense and Bailey’s actions and refusal to respond to police commands.

Bailey’s daughter, Erica, has said that she doesn’t believe that her father threatened the agents’ lives after the crash and that he was dazed from the crash impact and the deployment of an air bag.

A statement released Tuesday by Craig Karpe, the Bailey family of the chief of justice, said they have the right to privacy “as they continue to mourn the loss of their father and brother.”

Mayor Joe Hogsett’s office does not plan to respond to the scheme, the spokeswoman Taylor Schaffer said Tuesday.

The scheme states that it “should not be construed as an admission of liability or wrongdoing” on the defendants’ name.

Under the settlement, the city has agreed with the continuation of the training of officers to avoid confrontations with the public out of hand “in the kind of tragic loss of life” that occurred when the Bailey was fatally shot.

Indianapolis’ chief of police, Bryan Roach, also comply with the private party within 30 days with Bailey’s family members to discuss the fatal shooting, and the department of “efforts to help prevent similar results in the future.”

Roach had recommended that the civilian police merit board to fire Howard and Dinnsen.

Both officers are on administrative leave since the shooting. Officer Aaron Hammer, a city police spokesman said Tuesday that he could not respond to the officers’ current status with the department.

He referred questions to the city’s corporation council office. A message seeking comment on the officers’ status was left Tuesday for Donald Morgan, the city of Indianapolis’ chief litigation counsel.

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