A Minnesota police officer who was acquitted in last year’s fatal shooting of black motorist Philando Castile will receive $48,500 as he leaves the suburban police department that employed him at the time of the killing, according to a separation agreement.
Jeronimo Yanez will be paid the money in a lump sum, minus applicable deductions and withholdings for state and federal taxes.
Under the five-page agreement, released on Monday, the Minneapolis suburb of St. Anthony will also pay Yanez for up to 600 hours of accrued and unused personal leave pay.
The city said on Monday that the agreement “ends all employment rights” for Yanez.
Castile, a 32-year-old elementary school cafeteria worker, was shot by Yanez during a traffic stop in July 2016, after Castile told the officer he was armed. Castile had a permit for his gun.
Yanez, 29, was acquitted of manslaughter and other charges in June.
On the day of the verdict, the city announced the “public will be best served” if Yanez were no longer an officer.
“Since Officer Yanez was not convicted of a crime, as a public employee, he would have appeal and grievance rights if terminated,” it said in a statement. “A reasonable voluntary separation agreement brings to a close one part of this horrible tragedy.
“The City concluded this was the most thoughtful way to move forward and help the community-wide healing process proceed,” the statement read.
Under the agreement, the city is released from lawsuits by Yanez. He was given 10 days to consider and sign the agreement and has 15 days to rescind it in writing. The agreement noted the official “date of separation” as June 30.
Castile’s uncle, Clarence Castile, said he is glad Yanez will no longer be an officer.
“He should be in jail,” the uncle said. “He’s like a fish that wiggled his way off a hook. … Hopefully he won’t be able to get a police job in the United States. Because he’s a poor example of a police officer.”
Yanez had been with the St. Anthony Police Department since November 2011. His annual salary at the time of the shooting was more than $72,600, not including overtime pay, according to documents released by the city.
His acquittal in June led to days of protests, including one in St. Paul that ended with 18 arrests.
At a recent city council meeting, residents of St. Anthony called on the city’s mayor to resign.
Source: News agencies