City Settles Brain Injury Lawsuit For $3.4M After Protester is Struck by Rubber Bullets
The city of East Bay in California recently settled a brain injury lawsuit filed by a protester who was struck in the head by rubber bullets and suffered a brain injury. According to the lawsuit, the brain injury still affects her ability to concentrate and her memory to this day. Thus far, it is the highest settlement award for any lawsuit springing from the George Floyd protests in 2020. The settlements were agreed upon by three California cities, Walnut Creek, San Ramon, and Pleasant Hill.
Of the three cities to face judgment, only one responded to a request for comment. That city was Walnut Creek which issued a statement saying that its share of the $3.4 million settlement was $100,000. The city did say that it would revise its crowd control policies to eliminate tear gas and expand its less-than-lethal arsenal to include bean bag guns, bola wraps, and enhanced tasers.
The plaintiff joined the George Floyd protests to provide nourishment and medical assistance when necessary to protesters. She filled her backpack with snacks, first aid materials, and a camera. At about 6 p.m., police announced that there was a curfew in effect and that the crowd must disperse. Police warned protesters that if the crowd did not disperse, it would be fired upon by tear gas and non-lethal projectiles known as 40-millimeter sponge rounds usually referred to as rubber bullets. The plaintiff said that she began to leave the area through the only exit that law enforcement allowed. The area was riddled with tear gas and there was smoke everywhere. At some point, she was struck in the forehead by a rubber bullet that left a gaping flesh wound on her head.
Police said that protesters were hurling objects at them and one man threw a tear gas canister at them. Police were attempting to fire on this man when they struck the plaintiff in the head. According to Walnut Creek’s statement, one of the rounds “may have” hit the plaintiff causing her brain injury. Neither the plaintiff nor the city of Walnut Creek know which officer fired the rubber bullet at the plaintiff. She was eventually able to get a ride to the hospital from her father.
Doctors had initially diagnosed the plaintiff with a concussion. However, she continued to vomit for several days after the initial diagnosis and was eventually diagnosed with a brain bleed. The plaintiff contends that she still has symptoms to this day including memory problems and difficulty concentrating. She has difficulty remembering to respond to emails, organizing her day, and thinking clearly.
Talk to a Tampa, FL Brain Injury Attorney Today
Brain injuries can cause significant disability. When you’ve been injured due to the negligence of another party, you are entitled to sue to recover damages. The Tampa, FL brain injury attorneys at Florin Gray Bouzas Owens, LLC represent the interests of Tampa residents who have suffered brain injuries. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.