Attorneys for Prince George County, Maryland announced on Monday (Sept. 28) that a settlement has been reached with the family of William Green, a 43-year-old Black man who was fatally shot while he was handcuffed inside a police cruiser.
Prince George's County Cpl. Michael A. Owen Jr., who is also Black, has since been charged with second-degree murder and was fired from the department the day after the shooting.
He is currently awaiting trial.
“I am deeply sorry for your loss,'' County Executive Angela Alsobrooks told Green's mother at a Monday news conference over the settlement. "[The authority to take life] is given to the police by this community. It is a trusting relationship shared by the community and police. And when that trust is abused, it is necessary to take swift and decisive action."
William Murphy, an attorney for Green's family, told The Washington Post in a statement that the settlement was one of the largest in the history of court cases surrounding Black men killed by police and is a sign of progress.
“I agree with County Executive Alsobrooks that this historic settlement shows that the Black life of William Green and the Black lives of his grieving mother, son and daughter truly matter,” he said on Monday. “Black Lives Matter.”
Taxpayers will pay the $20 million.
Alsobrooks explained, “This is not the way we want to spend tax dollars, which is why we are doing everything we can to make sure it never happens again.”
On January 27, Green was shot and killed after he was stopped due to a 911 call about a man driving a Buick who had hit other cars.
Photos via Prince George Police Department & Twitter