The Minneapolis City Council approved a $15,000 settlement Thursday for a couple who said police fired rubber bullets at them, severely injuring the husband, as they watched a downtown protest over George Floyd's murder nearly two years ago.
Alisha and Norman Truman of Minneapolis sued the city and Police Department for civil rights violations and personal injuries they said they suffered on the night of May 28, 2020, when officers attacked them "without warning" during a rally at South 4th Street and Nicollet Mall.
Norman Truman suffered a fractured skull, a traumatic brain injury, an internal brain hemorrhage and a fractured wrist when he was hit in the head by a 40-millimeter projectile, according to the civil lawsuit filed in Minnesota's U.S. District Court.
Officers also launched a "chemical irritant canister" at the Trumans, causing a burning in their eyes, the complaint says.
On Aug. 4, 2021, just several months into the litigation, Norman Truman died, said lead attorney David Shulman, who declined to give the cause of death.
"In the short time that I knew Norman, I found him to be a delightful person," Shulman said, fighting his emotions. "I'm heartbroken by his death and how this legal proceeding played out."
The Minneapolis Attorney's Office and Police Department's administration recommended approval of the settlement "in the best interests" of the city.
In recent years, several protestors and journalists who attended protests after the police killing of Floyd have sued the city, alleging that law enforcement violated their constitutional rights with use of excessive force.
The Trumans' lawsuit also alleges they suffered several temporary and permanent injuries, including physical disability, mental and emotional distress, which took a toll on their marriage. Alisha Truman, who had been her husband's primary caretaker and the couple's financial provider, was appointed by the court as the trustee for his next of kin.
An online fundraiser effort has raised more than $41,500 to help with the couple's medical bills and other expenses.