BART System to Pay Daughter of Oscar Grant $1.5 Million
Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system officials have agreed to pay a $1.5 million settlement to the 5-year-old daughter of Oscar Grant, an unarmed man fatally shot by a transit police officer on Jan. 1, 2009.
Bystanders captured the video on cell phone, which depicted then-Officer Johannes Mehserle, 27, pulling his gun and shooting Grant in the back as another officer kneeled on Grant.
The settlement ends part of a federal civil rights $50 million lawsuit, brought by Grant's family, as previously discussed.
The Oakland Tribune reports that the agreement was with Sophina Mesa, who was Grant's girlfriend and is raising their daughter, Tatiana Grant. According to transit agency the settlement proceedings, and the settlement structure still needs to be approved by the court.
As previously discussed, the racially charged case involving former Bay Area Rapid Transit Officer (BART) Johannes Mehserle accused of a fatal shooting of an unarmed passenger on New Year's Day last year was moved to from Alameda County to Los Angeles County.
The attorney in the civil case, John Burris, said all of the money will be invested, with Tatiana receiving a series of payouts until her 30th birthday. Grant was a 22-year-old supermarket worker from Hayward, CA.
Johannes Mehserle now faces a murder trial in Los Angeles County. His attorneys say he thought he had his Taser in his hand when he fired a single shot with his pistol.
Since the incident the BART board has pledged to make sweeping changes in its police department's training, procedures and organization.
In addition, BART has worked with the Legislature on citizen oversight of its police department. The bill was passed by the Assembly earlier this week and now heads to the Senate.
- Sampler: BART to Pay $1.5 Million in Grant Case (New York Times)
- Assembly boosts oversight of BART police (Oakland Tribune)
- BART Shooting Murder Charge: Former Officer Mehserle Arrested and Charged (FindLaw)
- Wrongful Death (provided by Arye, Lustig & Sassower, P.C.)
- Wrongful Death Compensation (provided by Small Law Firm)
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