MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) –The city of Minneapolis continues to pay workers compensation claims, many by former Minneapolis police officers. The city council has approved settlements for employees who have left following the murder of George Floyd. Friday’s 21 payouts are just a third of them so far this year.
The Minneapolis Police Department has seen hundreds of officers leave the force since Floyd’s killing in May of 2020. A number of them left filing disability claims, citing PTSD. And now some of those first responders have formally separated with the department through a settlement.READ MORE: ‘It Was Very Much A Shock To Us': Allina Phillips Eye Institute To Operate In Different Location In 2022
“These officers have suffered and continue to suffer. This is compensation because they’ve lost their careers,” said attorney Ron Meuser said, who represents more than 200 officers and firefighters.
He continued: “These officers did not choose to go on a disability. They literally had no choice, and from a mental health stand point, they could not continue.”
WCCO-TV has learned the city has settled 60 workers compensation claims since the beginning of the year. We’re told they average $170,000.READ MORE: 'Be On The Lookout': Minneapolis Landlord Sounds The Alarm After Package Thief Repeatedly Hits Uptown Building
One of the 21 payouts approved Friday for $190,000 goes to Scott Creighton. The officer with 28 years on the job was called to testify during the Derek Chauvin trial.
Meuser expects the number of settlements to grow, saying his office alone has settled, or is waiting on approval for 65, and has another 130 that+ will go through the process. The funds come from taxpayer money, as the city of Minneapolis is self-insured.
“The city doesn’t just sit and write blank checks. These are negotiated settlements, based upon an officers injury, their earnings, their future loss of earnings and extent of their disability,” Meuser said.
Meuser thinks the settlement total will be somewhere around $35 million.MORE NEWS: Election Guide: What Is The Minneapolis Park And Recreation Board?
Separately, WCCO-TV has reported Minneapolis tops the list for officer conduct payouts for similar size cities, and the cost to taxpayers. You can see that report here.
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