PRESS RELEASE FROM THE CITY OF SPOKANE: Tonight the Spokane City Council will consider a resolution to accept the tentative agreement that would settle the civil case between the City of Spokane and the family of Otto Zehm.
The resolution will be considered as part of the Council's regular 6 p.m. legislative meeting held in the lower level of City Hall, 808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. Public testimony on the matter will be accepted.
Spokane Mayor David Condon and Ann Zehm reached that tentative agreement on Tuesday, May 15, following two days mediation with federal District Court Judge Michael J. Hogan, of Eugene, Ore., and Idaho attorney, Ford Elsaesser.
The tentative settlement agreement provides for compensation to Mrs. Zehm and Otto Zehm's estate, as well as a letter of apology to Mrs. Zehm and commitments by the City with regard to crisis intervention training. Other non-monetary commitments and agreements in the settlement bring the estimated present value of the settlement to $2 million.
RESOLUTION RE: SETTLEMENT OF
CLAIMS AGAINST CITY OF SPOKANE
WHEREAS, the Estate of Otto Zehm, and Genevieve Mann Personal Representative; and Ann Zehm (hereinafter "claimants"), filed a complaint for damages for violation of civil rights on March 13, 2009, arising out of an incident on March 18, 2006; and
WHEREAS, claimants allege injury as a result of the actions of the City of Spokane and its employees and assert financial damages from medical bills, funeral expenses, lost wages, and other special damages; and
WHEREAS, the City and the City's excess insurance carrier, "The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania," through Chartis (formerly known as AIU Holdings), have determined to resolve all differences with claimants and any third parties who may claim a subrogated interest against the City, its officers, agents, employees and contractors, for a payment of $1,670,000.00. The City of Spokane will pay the balance of its self-insured retention of SEVEN HUNDRED TWENTY THOUSAND, FIVE HUNDRED FIFTY-FOUR AND 08/100 DOLLARS ($720,554.08), and The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania will pay the balance; and
WHEREAS, in addition to the above monies, non-economic damages have been agreed upon by the parties at the request of the claimants to include the following:
WHEREAS, the claimants have agreed to accept said payment and the terms outlined above, and in return to provide a release of all claims to the City and named Defendants in their underlying lawsuit entitled The Estate of Otto Zehm, et al v. City of Spokane, et al, Cause No. CV-09-80-LRS, dismissing their lawsuit with prejudice.
NOW THEREFORE, be it resolved by the City Council of the City of Spokane:
That the City of Spokane authorizes the payment to claimants in the amount of SEVEN HUNDRED TWENTY THOUSAND, FIVE HUNDRED FIFTY-FOUR AND 08/100 DOLLARS ($720,554.08), which is the balance of its self-insured retention, with the understanding that The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania, through Chartis (formerly known as AIU Holdings) will pay the balance of the $1,670,000.00. In return the claimants will provide a signed release fully extinguishing all claims in connection with the claim and lawsuit, pledging to fully protect and indemnify the City of Spokane, its officers, agents, employees and contractors, against all loss or liability in connection with said claim.
PASSED the City Council this _____ day of _____________________, 2012.
Approved as to form: