Family receive record $19 million payout after son, 22, shot dead by police after calling for help
The family of 22-year-old Christian Glass is set to receive a record $19 million payout after their beloved son was shot dead by police in Colorado.
Glass’ life came to an abrupt end in June 2022, when he was driving in Silver Plume and his car became stuck on a dirt road late at night.
The 22-year-old called 911 for help, prompting police from Georgetown and Idaho Springs, as well as Clear Creek County Sheriff’s deputies, to respond to the scene.
Glass is said to have been experiencing a mental health crisis at the time, and told the dispatcher he had two knives, a hammer and a rubber mallet in his car – tools his family’s lawyer later said were related to his interest in geology.
Responding officers told Glass he needed to get out of the car, but he refused and said he was scared.
As time went on, officers broke a window to try and get Glass out of the car, and he grabbed one of the knives.
Officers tasered him and Glass started to swing the knife wildly in the direction of one officer, at which point he was shot and killed.
A grand jury later found that at no point was the officer imminently in danger of being stabbed.
Glass suffered five gunshot wounds, and his parents say none of the events that took place after police arrived should have happened.
In a news release today, lawyers for the Glass family confirmed they had reached an agreement to settle all of the claims they’d made following their son’s death for a record $19 million (£15.2m).
The money is to be paid by Clear Creek County, the State of Colorado, the Town of Georgetown, and the City of Idaho Springs, and marks the largest payout after a police killing in state history after the $15 million (£12m) settlement for the death of Elijah McClain in 2021.
Lawyers for the Glass family explained: “The size of the settlement reflects the immense wrong and injustice committed by the officers that killed Christian, whose death has broken his family and left an immeasurable void.”
As well as the $19 million, the family have agreed with the authorities that Clear Creek County will dedicate a public park to Glass, and that the county will establish a dedicated crisis response team and train and certify all its patrol officers in crisis intervention.
Colorado state has also agreed to develop a virtual reality (VR) training scenario reflecting Glass’ murder, which will highlight how to de-escalate a high-stress situation.
The Clear Creek County Sheriff has apologised for Glass’ death.
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