MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minneapolis City Council settled with the family of Terrance Franklin Friday for $795,000, following a six-year dispute in federal court.
Police shot and killed Franklin during a confrontation inside a home back in May of 2013.
For more than six years, Attorney Michael Padden has stood by Franklin’s family, who claim their loved one was wrongfully killed.
“My client, the trustee in the case and the other heirs are happy the case is over. They’re happy they have closure,” Padden said.
Padden said all along that MPD’s version of what happened in the basement of a south Minneapolis home did not match the evidence they had. Police say Franklin was shot and killed after a struggle with SWAT officers. Two officers were shot, but both survived.
Franklin’s death sparked months of protest from community members, who challenged the officers’ account of what happened. A grand jury decided there was not enough evidence to prosecute the officers.
“This was just a tragedy for everyone involved,” City Council President Lisa Bender said. “I think our policy changes in the police department, leadership changes have really created a scenario where this is unlikely to happen again, so I think it’s time to move forward and really continue with the changed that were making in the police department to make sure this never happens again.”
The city council approved the settlement in a closed session. Bender believes this will be the last settlement the city pays, and the use of body cameras will provide clarity in future cases.
“I think that contention is true in a sense that body camera should essentially tell the story. I think that is a fair point assuming. they are activated,” Padden said.
He admits this settlement is not an admission of wrong-doing by police, but it is one way both family and the department can move forward.
The family filed the initial lawsuit against the city, the two officers involved, and former police Chief Janeé Harteau. As part of the settlement, the family agreed to drop the individuals from the suit.
On Friday afternoon, Lt. Bob Kroll of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis sharply criticized the settlement in this statement:
It is with complete and utter disappointment to hear today the City Council of Minneapolis reached a settlement in regards to the death of Terrance Franklin,” Kroll said. “The Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis is outraged to say the least. This incident changed lives for many, to include the victim’s whose house was burglarized, the victim’s whose car was stolen, and the two Police Officers who were shot and significantly injured by Terrance Franklin, while attempting to stop him on his felonious crime spree. This shows the lack of support and compassion the City Council has regarding crime in this great city, the victim’s it leaves in its wake, and the care and well-being of our officers. It is a slap in the face of Justice. It seems instead of punishing violent offenders, the City Council is in the business of rewarding violent offenders. This payment only assists with promoting and perpetuating violent acts towards the citizens and visitors of this great city and violence towards Police Officers.