Santa Clara Reaches $ 5 Million Settlement With Jesus Geney-Montes’ Family Over Fatal 2017 Police Shooting – CBS San Francisco
SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) – Santa Clara city officials have approved a $ 5.3 million settlement with the family of Jesus Geney-Montes, who was fatally shot by a police officer in 2017.
City council members approved the settlement with Geney-Montes parents Amanda and Richard Sommers behind closed doors Tuesday. Officials said the settlement was not an admission of fault.
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“The City recognizes the grief and continued loss of the Sommers family, and it is with sincere hope that the resolution of this case will help the family begin to cope with the loss of their son,” officials said. in a press release on Wednesday.
Geney-Montes was shot dead by Constable Colin Stewart in a standoff on March 9, 2017. In November of that year, prosecutors cleared Stewart of wrongdoing and released a 53-page public report concluding that the shooting was justified.
Police responded to five calls for service at Geney-Montes’ home on the day of the shooting. In the first four cases, no crime had been committed and police said it was safer to back off after investigating calls to the Deborah Drive home where he lived with his mother and stepfather, according to the district attorney’s office.
During those visits, Geney-Montes reportedly threatened his stepfather, himself and officers, saying he had a gun and would shoot them if they entered, prosecutors said.
The last call came around 5 p.m. that day, with Geney-Montes’ mother reporting that he stabbed himself and escaped through her bedroom window.
Prosecutors released video of the body camera shot from Stewart’s point of view, which showed Geney-Montes walking away from officers in a standoff before shots were fired as officers were trying to get him to capitulate peacefully.
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Officers can be heard saying to Geney-Montes during the video: “You are not going to die today” as they attempted to bring him down from his perch on an embankment on the Scott Boulevard viaduct above the position of the officers.
He told officers during the confrontation that he had a gun and that he would kill them, although he later found himself unarmed. Prosecutors said Geney-Montes had his hand in his pockets for most of the standoff.
As Geney-Montes walked away from the officers, Stewart and other officers jumped a fence that separated them and Geney-Montes, who continued to walk away and through a closed gate under the overpass and near the track. railroad.
Video shows Stewart approaching Geney-Montes, first attempting to use his Taser stun gun to subdue him, which prosecutors said ineffective. Seconds later, the video shows Geney-Montes appearing to approach Stewart, with the door still between Stewart and Geney-Montes before the officer fires four shots at the suspect, fatally injuring him.
Prosecutors said Geney-Montes was mentally ill and suicidal in the stalemate leading up to the shooting, saying he was armed and in fact stabbed himself several times during the stalemate before being shot. A bloodied knife was found in some bushes near where he jumped a fence.
Following the shooting, Geney-Montes’ parents filed a wrongful death and excessive force lawsuit against the city and the police.
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City officials said that following Geney-Montes’ death, the department took several steps to deal with situations involving people with mental illness, including training in de-escalation techniques. The Ministry has also launched an Uniformed Crisis Intervention Specialist Unit that works with mental health and adult protection services.