Settlement Is Approved in Central Park Jogger Case, but New York Deflects Blame
A $41 million settlement for five men whose convictions in the 1989 beating and rape of a female jogger in Central Park were later overturned was made final on Friday, with the deal including unusual language that sought to absolve New York City from blame.The agreement, which awards the five black and Hispanic plaintiffs about $1 million for each year of their imprisonment, includes no admission of wrongdoing from the city; in fact, the city explicitly asserts that prosecutors and police detectives did nothing wrong at the time.
“The City of New York has denied and continues to deny that it and the individually named defendants have committed any violations of law or engaged in any wrongful acts concerning or related to any allegations that were or could have been alleged,” the settlement states.
The city’s corporation counsel, Zachary W. Carter, later amplified the city’s stance, saying that the agreement “should not be construed as an acknowledgment that the convictions of these five plaintiffs were the result of law enforcement misconduct.”
Four of the men — Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam and Raymond Santana Jr. — spent about seven years in prison; each will receive $7.125 million under terms of the deal. The fifth man, Kharey Wise, who served about 13 years, will receive $12.25 million.
I wonder how much their lawyers are getting?
Since wrongful convictions are, sadly, not uncommon, states should set up a system by law so those who have been freed won’t have to sue.
$1 doesn’t seem out of line for being unjustly imprisoned but getting millions in a lump sum is probably at mixed blessing.
Maybe $X for life plus free education for those who want it?