VA County Pays Nearly $3M In Police Shooting; No Charging Decision


The Washington, D.C., suburb of Fairfax County, Va., has agreed to pay $2.95 million to the family of John Geer, settling a wrongful death lawsuit over the 2013 shooting of the unarmed man by a county police officer, the Washington Post reports. Nearly 20 months after Geer's death, no decision has been made on whether to charge the officer, Adam Torres, with a crime. While federal and county prosecutors continue to consider the case, Torres remains on paid administrative duty.

Geer, 46, was standing in the doorway of his townhouse with his hands on top of the storm door when he was shot once in the chest. As his father and best friend watched in horror, Geer spun, closed the front door and fell to the floor. Fairfax police, uncertain of Geer's condition, waited an hour before going in to render aid while Geer's family pleaded with them to help. But Geer was dead where he fell. The settlement places the shooting in an unusual legal limbo: A civil suit as been resolved before prosecutors have decided whether to file criminal charges. Typically, civil cases in such matters aren't even filed until a criminal case is concluded, which enables the victim's relatives and their attorneys to gather information from the criminal prosecution and potentially benefit from a conviction.

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