Ph.D. Student Who Was Violently Arrested For ‘Stealing’ Own Car Reaches $1.25 Million Settlement

Lawrence Crosby was slammed to the ground and struck 11 times before police learned the vehicle was his.

A Black man from Illinois who was pulled over and falsely accused of stealing his own car reached a settlement with the Evanston Police Department of $1.25 million.

In October 2015, Lawrence Crosby was a 25-year-old Northwestern University engineering grad student in pursuit of his Ph.D. On Oct. 10, Crosby was pulled over told to get out of the car.

When he exited the vehicle with his hands raised, officers took him to the ground, where he was struck 11 times.

After brutally beating Crosby, Evanston police officers eventually learned the car was owned by Crosby.

Now, 28-year-old Dr. Crosby has delivered his first public address about the lasting trauma he’s experienced from the incident.

“It’s not easy for me to have to be put back into that situation and have to relieve it again,” Crosby told Fox 13 Salt Lake City. “At that moment in time, I did not know if I would make it to the end of the night.”

“I’ve had to deal with post-traumatic stress and having fear of the police, honestly,” Crosby added.

Prosecutors accused Crosby of charges including resisting arrest. Once he was found not guilty, Crosby filed a civil suit against the city and officers.

“The settlement was for $1.25 million, and I consider that a fair and just compensation for the experience that I went through,” Crosby said.

Crosby said no officers were disciplined for their actions and he never received as much as an apology from the police department.

“We’re not looking for apologies (now). We’re looking for change,” Crosby’s attorney, Steven Yonover, said.

Crosby hopes he can work with law enforcement, academics and other agencies to address issues of implicit bias and stereotyping.

An attorney for the City of Evanston said there’s no admission of liability in the settlement. It still must be approved by the city council. That’s currently scheduled for January 28.

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