St. Paul, MN - On Monday, June 26, St. Anthony city officials announced the Philando Castile settlement payment to his family, according to The Washington Post.
Castile was shot and killed during a July, 2016 traffic stop by former St. Anthony Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez.
In a press release, the city announced that they are paying Castile's family almost $3 million over his shooting death.
The media went wild with its reporting of the case, largely due to a false narrative by Castile's girlfriend Diamond Reynolds, who livestreamed only what happened after the incident, not what led up to it, and what occurred during it. However, dashcam video that was released tells the true story of what happened.
On June 16, a jury acquitted Officer Yanez of all charges involving the shooting of Philando Castile after 27 hours of deliberation. Shortly afterward, the city of St. Anthony announced that Officer Yanez would never be allowed to return to work.
In a statement, the city said “The City of St. Anthony has concluded that the public will be best served if Officer Yanez is no longer a police officer in our city. The city intends to offer Officer Yanez a voluntary separation agreement to help him transition to another career other than being a St. Anthony officer.”
Our police sources in the area say that Officer Yanez agreed to resign after he learned that the department wouldn't allow him to return to work.
Officer Jeronimo Yanez is unlikely to work in law enforcement again. Even if he found an agency willing to hire him, the agency's insurance company would likely deny coverage if he's hired.
It seems that the city didn't waste much time on settling this incident with the family of Philando Castile either.
In a statement, the city said, “The city and [Valerie Castile] were able to reach this agreement avoiding a federal civil rights lawsuit which may have taken years to work its way through the courts exacerbating the suffering of the family and of the community." The total amount paid to Castile's family was $2.995 million.
During the traffic stop, Castile told Officer Yanez that he had a gun, and Officer Yanez can be heard in the video telling him several times not to reach for it, not to "pull it out." Castile told Officer Yanez that "I don't have to reach for it", and reached in the area where the gun was, despite multiple commands not to.
It was later determined that Castile was high on marijuana at the time of the stop, which impaired his ability to listen to Officer Yanez when he was instructed not to reach for his gun. Officer Yanez shot Castile after he ignored orders and reached towards his gun.
In hindsight, it appears likely that Castile did not intend to harm Officer Yanez. However, by ignoring the officer's commands not to reach, and continuing to reach towards his gun, Philando Castile created the circumstances where a reasonable officer would have assumed he was reaching for his gun.
The circumstances make this settlement different than the Michael Brown settlement. Michael Brown was killed while actually trying to kill a police officer. Philando Castile was killed by unintentionally creating the impression that he was about to kill a police officer. These circumstances likely contributed to Castile's family receiving twice as much money as Michael Brown's family.
Video of the aftermath of the shooting led to rioting, and along with the Alton Sterling shooting, contributed to the assassinations of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge.