*Baltimore officials have reached a $6.4 million wrongful death settlement with the family of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old man who died in April from a neck injury he suffered in police custody.
The deal still needs the approval of Baltimore’s Board of Estimates, which oversees the city’s spending. That group, which includes Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (D), is scheduled to convene Wednesday, according to The Washington Post.
In a statement Tuesday, the mayor’s office said the settlement would resolve any civil claims against the city, the police department and the individual officers, but is not an admission of liability and would not impact the criminal cases.
“The proposed settlement agreement going before the Board of Estimates should not be interpreted as a judgment on the guilt or innocence of the officers facing trial,” Rawlings-Blake said in a statement. “This settlement is being proposed solely because it is in the best interest of the city, and avoids costly and protracted litigation that would only make it more difficult for our city to heal and potentially cost taxpayers many millions more in damages.”
Under the proposal, $2.8 million would be paid to Gray’s family this fiscal year, and $3.6 million in the fiscal year beginning next July, the city said.
The settlement was reached following weeks of talks between city leaders and Billy and Hassan Murphy, attorneys for the Gray family.
The agreement comes a week after renewed demonstrations sparked by a court hearing in which a judge concluded that the six Baltimore police officers indicted in Gray’s death and arrest should be given separate trials. This week, the judge will consider whether those trials should be held in Baltimore or moved to another jurisdiction.
Gray was arrested the morning of April 12 and died days later from a catastrophic injury that occurred while he was being driven in a police van. Authorities said Gray was handcuffed and unbelted at the time.