Philadelphia will pay $9.25 million to 200 rioters who were teargassed and hit with rubber bullets.
The rioting was completely incidental to the fact the people who threw rocks at police and broke store windows and assaulted innocent people were stung by rubber bullets and gassed with an irritant.
This is not all. The city will also be required to contribute $500,000 to a fund to provide counseling for victims of police violence and community-led programming.
This does not have anything to do with the George Floyd riots which rocked the city from May 31-June 1, 2020. According to Mayor Jim Kenney, this is a downpayment for slavery reparations.
Kenney stated that although this settlement is only one step towards reconciliation, it will help to heal the hurt experienced by those in West Philadelphia’s neighborhoods and during the demonstrations on I-676 in 2020.
Philadelphia’s Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw is more concerned with “First Amendment Rights” than protecting people and property.
The commissioner stated that “Alongside city, state, as well as community stakeholders, we will keep working non-stop towards improving the police’s ability to protect the First Amendment rights of protesters, keep communities and officers safe, and eventually prove that we are dedicated to a higher standard.”
Is this the type of speech that Commissioner Outlaw refers to as “First Amendment” speech?
According to NBC 10:
At least 91 people were detained in Philadelphia on Sunday for code violations. One person was arrested for assaulting police, one for propulsion missiles, one for rioting, and one for vandalism. 43 people were also detained for looting or burglary.
At 6 p.m., a citywide curfew was in effect. SEPTA closed all services.
People broke windshields on several police cars in West Philadelphia, setting fire to one near 52nd and Market streets. A building fire was also reported near Walnut and 52nd streets. This is the same area that saw several stores, including a Foot Locker, vandalized.
This massive settlement makes it clear that Philadelphians will now be able to loot, attack police officers and cause mayhem on the streets under the First Amendment.
The city will have to pay if they try to stop them with non-lethal methods like rubber bullets or tear gas.
According to Philadelphia Inquirer:
Two incidents were the focus of the lawsuits: the massive teargassing of protesters at I-676 on June 1, 2020, and the use of military-style weapons by police on residents and demonstrators while trying to curb looting along West Philadelphia’s 52nd Street corridor, which is a historically Black neighborhood.
The plaintiffs complained of rashes, pain, difficulty breathing, and other symptoms that were caused by exposure to noxious chemicals. Some required hospitalization while others suffered mental trauma.
A rash costs nine million dollars, that’s incredible.
It wasn’t officers wading through crowds of protesters with nightsticks in hand. It’s not as if the protestors weren’t told they would be teargassed. Why didn’t the protesters leave if they didn’t want to be teargassed?
Five police officers sustained injuries after being hit by bricks, rocks, and Molotov cocktails on May 31, 2020. If no one supports their actions against peaceful protestors, why do police have to respond to a riot?