Iowa City Settles Police Shooting Wrongful Death Suit for $2.5M

January 11, 2016

The city of Waterloo, Iowa, has settled a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the family of a man shot to death in 2012 by a police officer.

A judge signed off on the $2.5 million settlement with the city’s insurance carrier in December, the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported. Court records show that $1.255 million will go to Derrick Ambrose Jr.’s parents and $1 million will go to attorney’s fees.

Attorneys for Ambrose’s family have filed papers to dismiss the lawsuit, which had been filed in U.S. District Court in Cedar Rapids.

As part of the settlement, the city and officers admitted no wrongdoing.

Criminal investigators said the 22-year-old Ambrose was seen with a gun outside New World League in Waterloo on Nov. 18, 2012. Investigators say Ambrose fled from Waterloo authorities and ignored commands to stop.

Authorities say Ambrose stumbled and fell, then rose and turned toward Officer Kyle Law, who shot him twice. Ambrose’s pistol was later found in a yard, and investigators concluded that Ambrose likely tossed the gun moments before the shooting.

A grand jury declined to charge Law.

“This settlement will not bring back my son, but it may raise awareness of what is wrong with law enforcement in Iowa and around the nation,” Derrick Ambrose Sr. said in a written statement issued by his attorney. “We must take a hard look at how we can better support the good police officers, and how cities can better investigate and discipline excessive force by police officers.”

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