After being acquitted of firing at police enforcement in self-defense, he sued the city, claiming that the action was never about “a check,” but rather “justice and accountability.”
The city of Minneapolis offered and accepted a $1.5 million settlement, including expenses and attorney fees, to Jaleel Stallings on Tuesday, May 17.
According to the lawsuit, officers in the Minneapolis Police Department lied about the incident on May 30, 2020, including their instructions to officers to “deliberately hide their appearance so that they might pursue people by sneaking up and shooting them with 40mm ammunition.”
The fact that a cop shot him first without identifying himself as law enforcement or presenting good reason, a swarm of cops assaulted him for up to 30 seconds, and other badges failed to interfere when they saw their colleague employing excessive force were all corroborated by an investigation.
According to initial reports, Stallings broke a curfew and shot at the officer amid the violent riots that followed George Floyd’s murder.
Stallings’ lawyer, Eric Rice, presented a bodycam of the incident, showing his client being blasted with plastic bullets from an unidentified source in an unmarked car before firing his pistol.
A federal court ruling agreed that the military man, who was lawfully entitled to carry his weapon and defend himself on that Saturday night, acted in self-defense and acquitted him of the cops’ allegations.
According to the Star Tribute, the city’s counsel offered a settlement to avoid the lawsuit coming to trial. Stallings agreed to the terms that the city and officer will not admit liability and “expressly dispute the legitimacy of [Stallings] claims,” according to court records.
“It’s disheartening,” Stallings said, “since the civil suit’s purpose was not a check.”
He went on to say, “It was about gaining justice and accountability.” “And I don’t think I’ve gotten that.” “I don’t believe anything has been done to hold cops accountable or improve the enforcement culture that leads to these instances,” Stallings said on KARE 11.
He said he was delighted the film was released because it revealed the officers’ behind-the-scenes beliefs about their patrol duties and the people they are hired to serve.
“I’m grateful that we were able to share that bodycam film to the public so that they could view it and form their own judgments and conclusions about what transpired that night, and how police used force throughout those riots,” Stallings said.
Lt. Johnny Mercil, a high-ranking cop, is caught on video stereotyping demonstrators, claiming they must be white “since there’s no looting.”
Cmdr. Bruce Folkens, another high-ranking officer, was caught on camera bragging about “hunting people.” The public uproar over these remarks strained the connection between civilians and Minneapolis police.
Deputy Minneapolis City Attorney Erik Nilsson said the deal was reached after consultation with the City Council.
According to a statement from Nilsson, “the City Attorney’s Office, after consultation with the City Council, served on the Plaintiff, in this case, a Federal Rule 68 Offer of Judgment in the amount of $1.5 million.” “This ruling was accepted by the plaintiff. The city is hoping for a quick resolution to this issue so that all parties may move on.”
“The city hopes that a quick conclusion would allow all parties to move forward,” Nilsson added.
Stallings is one of three protest-related settlements reached by the city in the last two months.
The City Council approved $1.8 million in April for two women who claim officers shot them in the face with projectiles during the protest, and Soren Stevenson received $2.4 million in March after losing his left eye to the blunt impact of a projectile fired from a 40mm firearm by officers in an attempt to disperse a group of protesters.