Columbus city council approves $10 million settlement with family of Andre Hill

·3 min read

A $10 million settlement between the family of Andre Hill and the city of Columbus, Ohio, was approved in a city council vote on Monday evening, formalizing a deal announced last week.

The figure is the highest amount ever paid by the city and follows widespread outrage over Hill’s death, who was fatally shot by a now-former police officer as he walked out of the garage of a home in December. Council members approved the deal during a meeting held over teleconference Monday evening.

City Attorney Zach Klein announced the deal on Friday, noting that the Hill family will never be whole again.

“No amount of money will ever bring Andre Hill back to his family, but we believe this is an important and necessary step in the right direction,” Klein said.

Hill’s family has been represented by civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who has represented a number of Black families who have lost loved ones in police encounters, including the families of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.

The $10 million sum will be split into two payments, one by the end of the 2021 calendar year and the other half dispersed in the first quarter of 2022, according to the settlement agreement. It also includes an agreement to rename a local gymnasium in Hill’s honor by the end of the year.

Hill’s daughter said Friday following the announcement that the settlement was a step in the right direction, but still not “full justice” for her father. Alvin Williams, Hill’s brother, thanked the city, peaceful protesters and many others for helping to set “this new positive trend about wrongdoing in policing.”

“We want things to change rapidly, immediately. As far as my brother, every soldier doesn’t make it through battle, but the thing is they’ve paved the way for everybody else to have freedom and the righteous way of living in a more peaceful society," he said.

Hill was shot and killed when officers responded to a call that a person in a vehicle kept turning the engine on and off on the night of Dec. 22.

Officer Adam Coy was fired from the Columbus Division of Police in December and indicted in connection to Hill's death. He pleaded not guilty to charges of murder in the commission of a felony, felonious assault and reckless homicide.

In February, a judge reduced his $3 million bond to $1 million.

Coy's attorney had previously said his client believed Hill had a gun but no weapon was found at the scene. The former officer's next court date is scheduled for June 7.

Neither Coy nor the second officer who responded turned their body cameras on until immediately after the shooting. However, an automatic "look back" function captured the shooting without audio.

Video showed Coy using his flashlight as he and the other officer walked up the driveway of a home where Hill was a guest. Hill exited the garage holding a cellphone in his hand and began walking toward the officers when he was shot four times by Coy.