Thursday, February 26, 2009
The Burge cases are only the most notorious of hundreds of police-related lawsuits the city has been forced to contend with this year alone. And though their cost to the city’s reputation may not be as high, their financial impact is. By June the city already had paid out more than $62 million in 295 police-related lawsuits. Even if you deduct the torture cases, the city still spent more to close police suits in the first half of 2008 than it did for the entire year in 2007, 2006, or 2005.
And that’s just the bill for the cops. Scores of suits have been filed against other city departments, and through just the first six months of the year Chicago was already on the hook for some $80 million in settlements and court judgments. That’s far more than in any recent year in Chicago—up from about $34 million in 2005. And it doesn’t even include the $12 million spent to settle hundreds of suits related to the Shakman consent decrees, a series of federal court orders banning patronage hiring and firing, or the $11 million it took to settle a dispute with Millennium Park contractors—both paid in 2008 after years of litigation. That’s a total of more than $100 million to close lawsuits from January through June.
Chicago pays out more than almost every other large city in the country. From January 2005 through June 2008, we paid about $230 million in settlements and judgments; Los Angeles, which has a larger population, paid about $77 million. Houston, with about 77 percent of our population, paid about 6 percent of what we did, about $14 million. Only New York, with about three times as many residents as Chicago, paid more, but its city government has a wider scope—it oversees jail and hospital systems, for instance. In Chicago those are the county’s responsibility.
Lawsuits involving the police account for about 44 percent of Chicago’s settlements and judgments. In New York and LA they account for only about a quarter. And the amount Chicago is spending to close police-related lawsuits is increasing—from about $23 million for all of 2005 to more than $62 million for the first half of 2008.
I was just reading the slumtimes and a guy who recived a DUI in Oct of 2007 filed a lawsuit against the CPD. Blah Blah Blah false arrest he wasn't drunk Blah blah blah
He is quoted in the paper that this has been going on for years and it has to stop.
I calling BULLSHIT why did he wait so long to file a lawsuit if he wasn't drunk.
As you see the city had paid out more than 62 million dollars for the first half of 2008.
He probably will get something from the city I don't understand why the city always settles. They say its cheaper !!!!!!
The problem is they all know the city settles even if the police were not in the wrong
This has to stop