PORTSMOUTH, Va. (AP) – The city of Portsmouth will pay a Virginia state $ 300,000,000 according to a settlement in a lawsuit the senator filed after she was accused of damaging a Confederate monument during a 2020 protest.
Portsmouth police have accused Senator Louise Lucas and several others of conspiracy to commit a crime and damage to a $ 1,000 monument after a protest drew hundreds of people to a local Confederate monument. The heads of Confederate statues were ripped off and a statue was pulled down, critically injuring a protester.
Two months later, former Portsmouth Police Chief Angela Greene announced charges against Lucas and 18 others, including NAACP leaders, public defenders and a member of the Portsmouth School Board.
A judge later dismissed all charges in the case. Greene was fired the same day.
Lucas served Greene and the police officer who filed charges against her with the $ 6.75 million lawsuit in November 2021, alleging malicious prosecution, false imprisonment and gross negligence. It also accused Greene of defamation.
The Virginian-Pilot reports that the trial was settled by mediation on 23 December. Under the agreement, Lucas will release the defendants and the city from future liability, said Burle Stromberg, the interim city attorney.
Lucas, a longtime Democratic state senator, said she was happy with the settlement and plans to donate the money.
“I also understand that any settlement from a locality affects their ability to fund critical programs in our community,” That’s what Lucas said in a statement Friday. “That is why I promise that I will donate all that I receive in the settlement to the charitable efforts of our community that I have been involved in for so many years.”
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