The Minneapolis City Council approved a $27 million settlement on Friday for the family of George Floyd, an African American resident killed during his arrest by city police officers.
The family’s attorney, Ben Crump, said it was the largest pre-trial settlement in history for a civil rights suit.
The settlement “sends a powerful message that Black lives do matter and police brutality against people of color must end,” Crump told reporters in a statement.
“This agreement is a necessary step for all of us to begin to get some closure,” Floyd’s brother Rodney said. “George’s legacy for those who loved him will always be his spirit of optimism that things can get better, and we hope this agreement does just that—that it makes things a little better in Minneapolis and holds up a light for communities around the country.”
Floyd’s family filed the a federal civil rights suit in July against the city and four officers involved in Floyd’s arrest and death on May 25. The incident, during which former officer Derek Chauvin pinned Floyd to the ground with his knee on Floyd’s kneck, sparked massive riots in cities across the U.S., along with protests that continued throughout the summer.
“I do want to, on behalf of the entire City Council, offer my deepest condolences to the family of George Floyd, his friends and all of our community who are mourning his loss,” Council president Lisa Bender said on Friday.
The settlement comes in the midst of jury selection for Chauvin’s criminal trial. Hennepin County District Court Judge Peter Cahill allowed prosecutors on Thursday to reinstate a third-degree murder charge against Chauvin.