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$350,000 settlement offered in police takedown of wrong man

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Officials of a Georgia city are offering a $350,000 legal settlement to an innocent Black man injured when a police officer slammed him to the ground. The offer approved Thursday by the Valdosta City Council also includes creation of a citizen review board to help oversee local police. Antonio Arnelo Smith sued Valdosta police and city officials last year, saying his civil rights were violated when an officer crept up behind him, wrapped him in a bear hug and slammed him to the ground face-first on Feb. 8, 2020. Police body cameras captured the violent takedown. The officer who slammed Smith said he mistook him for another man with an outstanding arrest warrant. Smith’s attorney said he’s reviewing the settlement offer.   

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Associated Press

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