$16.5 Million for What?
- The City Council Finance Committee today recommended the city pay up to $16.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit accusing Chicago police of civil rights violations, and more than half a million people could be eligible to apply for an award.
The case was filed in 2004 on behalf of people who claimed they were held too long or otherwise improperly treated by Chicago police during a span of more than a decade.
If approved Wednesday by the full council, up to 512,000 people would be eligible under the federal settlement to seek payments of between $90 and $3,000.
- The class includes up to 12,000 people arrested between March 15, 1999 and Feb. 10, 2008 for alleged felonies who were not given a probable cause hearing within 48 hours. Awards in those cases would be limited to $3,000.
The class also includes people held between Oct. 21, 2001 and March 10, 2010 in interview rooms for more than 16 hours without a mattress or pad to sleep on, regular meals or sufficient bathroom access. Those plaintiffs would be eligible for rewards that top out at $2,000.
Also include are those held overnight in lockups between Oct. 21, 2001 and March 10, 2010 without a proper overnight bedding. Their payments would be limited to $90.
We would suggest that the dope boys have enough weed, blow and rocks around for the day the city cuts these checks. Also, the Department should draft an emergency plan for the uptick in domestics, disturbances, robberies and thefts that are bound to occur once the checks get cashed. And perhaps an aspiring sociologist can prepare a master's thesis on the effects of $16.5 million being dumped into a narrow slice of the socio-economic pool. The results could be fascinating.