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$45 million misconduct settlement for man crippled in ‘largest’ police van in nation’s history, lawyers say

A $45 million settlement has been reached for the treatment of a man who became paralyzed in a police van after a 2022 arrest in New Haven, Connecticut, attorneys for the defendant confirmed to CBS News on Friday.

Richard “Randy” Cox suffered a neck injury on June 19, 2022, when the police van carrying Cox to jail braked hard to avoid a collision with another vehicle that had pulled out of a side street, police say .

As there was no seatbelt and Cox could not get ready because his hands were handcuffed, he flew headfirst into the metal divider between the driver’s section and the prisoner area.

Video footage showed Cox pleading for help and officers accusing him of being drunk and not believing he was injured. The police put him in a wheelchair and took him to a cell. There they waited for an ambulance.

Two police officers, Jocelyn Lavandier and Luis Rivera, were fired for violating the rules of conduct for police officers regarding respect for the law, integrity, reliability, courtesy and respect. The two officers and three others too face criminal charges.

New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker said in a statement, “The New Haven Police Department has implemented a comprehensive set of reforms, updated its policies and procedures on transferring persons into custody. and demanded department-wide training on duty to respond. involved are held accountable by the police department and in court.”

Thirty million of the total settlement will be covered by New Haven’s insurance, and the rest will be paid for by the city, the news release said.

“As the largest settlement in a police misconduct case in the history of our country, this settlement sends a message to the country that we know we have to be better than this,” said Cox attorneys Ben Crump. , Louis Rubano and RJ Weber, in a press release.

The Associated Press contributed reporting


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