Buena Park, CA’s $5 million settlement with the family of a man shot by a police officer is one of the largest in Orange County history. Experts say it shows that Buena Park was afraid a jury would award even more. Expert witnesses were prepared to testify that the officer made several “tactical blunders” in confronting the suspect and the attorney for the family said he had evidence that contradicted the police version of the story. OCRegister.com reports:
George Wright, criminal justice chair at Santiago College, said it would have cost far less to defend the case, if city officials thought they had a chance. “I’ve never heard of a settlement that large in an officer-involved shooting,” Wright said….According to court records, veteran gang officer Ron Furtado shot and killed Juan Herrera two days before Christmas in 2004, testifying later that he believed Herrera was leaning over as if to grab a weapon from under his car seat. However, Herrera, 23, was sitting upright, according to testimony from a forensics expert witness hired by Sayre.