An African American woman punched repeatedly by a California Highway Patrol officer on the side of a freeway in an incident caught on video will receive $1.5 million under a settlement, and the officer has agreed to resign.
CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow confirmed the settlement in an emailed statement and an attorney for Marlene Pinnock confirmed the dollar amount for The Associated Press.
The punching occurred after motorists’ 911 calls reported that Pinnock, who is bipolar, was walking along the freeway and the responding officer pulled her from traffic, according to a legal document in the case.
Wednesday’s settlement agreement came after a nine-hour mediation session in Los Angeles.
“When this incident occurred, I promised that I would look into it and vowed a swift resolution,” Farrow’s statement said. “Today, we have worked constructively to reach a settlement agreement that is satisfactory to all parties involved.”
The statement said that Officer Daniel Andrew, who joined the CHP in 2012 and has been on paid administrative leave since the incident, “has elected to resign.”
Andrew could still be charged criminally in the case. The CHP forwarded the results of its investigation of the incident to Los Angeles County prosecutors last month, saying he could face serious charges but none have been filed yet.
While no amount of money can make up for any physical and emotional trauma Pinnock suffered after that brutal and vicious beating, monetary compensation is an admission of guilt and wrongdoing. Anyone who saw the video remembers the rage of the police officer as he punched and beat a helpless woman. Criminal charges should be next.