Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

City Of North Charleston To Pay $6.5 Million To Family Of Walter Scott

The city has reached a settlement with the family of an unarmed black man shot in the back and killed by a white police officer.

"This settlement is a step in the right direction for the family, the city, the Lowcountry, and our state," North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey said, according to Charleston's local CBS affiliate station. "This will allow us to move forward and focus on the issues our citizens have elected us to do, advance quality of life and make the future brighter for the citizens of North Charleston."

The April 4 shooting of Walter Scott was captured on a cellphone camera by a passerby. The officer, Michael Slager, was fired and charged with murder. A judge denied bail last month.

Scott, a 50-year-old father of four, was shot after he ran from a traffic stop. Slager shot Scott eight times as he ran away in an open field.

The agreement is the third settlement of approximately $6 million reached in the last year with families of black men killed by police. The city of Baltimore settled with the family of Freddie Gray, whose April death in police custody prompted murder charges for six officers and city-wide riots, for $6.4 million in September. The family of Eric Garner, who died after allegedly being put in a chokehold by a New York City police officer in July 2014, was paid $5.9 million. Garner's death was also captured on video by a bystander. But in December, a grand jury decided not to indict the officer who wrapped his arm around Garner's neck.

For Scott's family, the settlement offers a modicum of validation.

"This is a small victory," said Anthony Scott, Walter Scott's brother told the Washington Post. "And as long as we win the war, and get a conviction for murder, we will be pleased and feel like we got justice."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

What questions do you have about the Statewide General Election coming up on Nov. 8? Submit your questions here, and we'll try to answer them in our reporting.