New York City reached a settlement with the family of Eric Garner on Monday. The city has agreed to pay $5.9 million in resolution of a claim over his death at the hands of New York Police Department officers last July, a lawyer representing the family told the New York Times.
The settlement comes just days before the deadline for the family to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the city. In October, Garner’s family filed a notice of claim to sue the city for $75 million, alleging negligence and carelessness by the police, which resulted in his death, according to NBC New York. Had the settlement not been reached by Friday, a suit would have been filed by the family.
Garner, 43, died on July 17 after arresting police officer, Daniel Pantaleo, placed him in a chokehold and other officers wrestled him to the ground for allegedly selling untaxed cigarettes. His death caught national attention after a video of the arrest was uploaded by a bystander. In the footage, Garner was seen struggling with police, repeatedly gasping, “I can’t breathe” -- words protestors rallied behind after a grand jury decided in December not to indict NYPD officer Pantaleo for his actions in the arrest.
Garner’s death had been ruled a homicide by the New York City Medical Examiner’s Office in August.
The settlement is one of the largest issued by New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer in recent months. Last February, the city settled for $6.4 million with David Ranta, who was imprisoned for 23 years for a murder he didn’t commit, according to the New York Times. He had originally intended to sue the city for $150 million.