Detroit settles with family of girl killed in police raid


DETROIT (AP) — The city of Detroit reached an $8.25 million settlement Thursday with the family of a 7-year-old girl accidentally killed by a police officer during a 2010 raid.

Detroit Corporation Counsel Lawrence Garcia announced the settlement with the family of Aiyana Stanley-Jones four days before a civil trial was to begin.

“Aiyana’s death was a tragic loss for her family and has been a heavy burden on our community. We believe today’s settlement is fair because it balances the needs of Aiyana’s family and our responsibility for the city’s finances. We hope this resolution will provide everyone involved a measure of closure,” Garcia said in a statement.

The girl was shot in the head while she slept on a couch. Joseph Weekley, a member of an elite police unit, was the first officer through the door of her home during a chaotic search for a murder suspect. He says he accidentally fired his gun during a struggle with Aiyana’s grandmother.

The family’s attorney, Geoffrey Fieger, said the settlement should allow the family, the city and Weekley to move on from the tragedy. He said the settlement “won’t provide full justice. The only full justice would be to bring Aiyana back and I can’t do that.”

Senate Republicans to Block Schumer's Ukraine Funding Plan After Classified Briefing Turns Into Screaming Match

The settlement still needs approval from the Detroit City Council.

The Michigan Supreme Court last September cleared the way for a trial or settlement when it declined to hear an appeal after two courts ruled a jury could decide whether Weekley’s actions amounted to gross negligence.

Weekley was charged with involuntary manslaughter, but a judge dismissed that charge during a second trial in 2014.

Chauncey Owens, whom police were searching for in the raid, was eventually arrested in a second-floor unit of the duplex where the girl and her family lived. Owens was later convicted of murder in the death of 17-year-old Je’rean Blake, who was fatally shot outside a convenience store days before the raid. The girl’s father, Charles Jones, was convicted of second-degree murder for providing the gun used to kill Blake.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City