• $2.25M settlement reached in Jonathan Ferrell civil suit


    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The city of Charlotte and the family of Jonathan Ferrell have reached a settlement in the civil suit involving a former Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer.

    Officer Randall Kerrick shot and killed Jonathan Ferrell in September 2013.

    The settlement is for $2.25 million, according to a letter sent to officers by CMPD Chief Rodney Monroe.

    The settlement resolves the Ferrell family’s claim against the city of Charlotte and Kerrick.

    The agreement contains no admission of fault by anyone.

    SPECIAL SECTION: Jonathan Ferrell

    In a press conference Thursday, Charlotte Mayor Dan Clodfelter said the Charlotte City Council unanimously approved the settlement.

    “The city remains saddened by Mr. Ferrell’s death and sympathizes with his family,” Charlotte City Attorney Bob Hagemann said. “While we realize that money is an inadequate means of compensating Mr. Ferrell’s family, we feel that this was a fair and equitable settlement.”

    IMAGES: Jonathan Ferrell

    Hagemann said the settlement will not effect the budget this year.

    "We also know it's important these tough conversations continue if we are to be an open community,"  Clodfelter said.

    The mayor said he knows the money can never fully compensate someone for a loss.

    Georgia Ferrell, the mother of Jonathan Ferrell, released a statement on the settlement.

    "We are grateful that this case has been resolved, but it is devastating to know that nothing we do will ever bring Jonathan back.  Our faith in God and the power of prayer are the only things that have gotten us through this tragic situation," Gerogia Ferrell said.  

    CLICK HERE to view the full statement from Georgia Ferrell

    Ferrell’s family filed a civil suit in January 2014. It accused all parties of gross negligence in Ferrell’s death.

    In the past five years, the city said it paid out $2.86 million for 13 cases involving the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.

    In the settlement for Ferrell’s family, the city will have to pay $2 million, while liability insurance will cover the remaining money.

    The settlement of the civil case is unrelated to the criminal case. It cannot be submitted as evidence in the criminal trial.

    Kerrick pleaded not guilty in the criminal case on the shooting.

    The attorneys for Kerrick were in court last week asking for a change of venue and bringing a new account of the moments leading up to the shooting.

    Read our past coverage on the case here.

    CMPD Chief Rodney Monroe's letter sent to officers:

    "Dear CMPD Members

    Recently, the Mayor and City Council approved a $2.25 million dollar settlement in the civil case with the family of Jonathan Ferrell. Although there is no monetary amount that will ever change the facts of this case or bring back Mr. Ferrell, the city believed that the settlement was fair.

    The lives of two families will be forever changed as a result of the events of September 14, 2013.

    The incident has and continues to capture the emotions of all, including many citizens and law enforcement members across the country. Nevertheless, I have the utmost confidence and respect for what you do each and every day. We are not perfect, nor will we ever be. However, that should not hinder us from striving for perfection as it relates to serving and protecting our citizens.

    Our business is a complicated one at times, and we are often called on to make split second decisions that can have potentially serious consequences. Daily, we invest our hearts and our minds in our work. Sometimes we hear about incidents with CMPD that might be discouraging. However, this should not deter us from how we should respectfully treat people nor cause us to shrink from our responsibilities as sworn officers.

    We are also expected to uphold the highest standards of moral character and fortitude even in the most tense and chaotic situations. This is especially true concerning the use of force. When we first put on the badge, we willingly accepted the responsibility that our actions would be fair and just. When challenges do arise, I am confident that we will face those challenges head on and not waver in our duty or our judgments.

    In closing, I can't emphasis enough how important each of you are to our organization. You should be proud of what you do. Our work must also focus on building trust so that we can we can continue to garner support throughout every community in Charlotte."

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