The New Pittsburgh Courier has learned that the City of Pittsburgh has settled with Leon Ford out-of-court for $5.5 million, days before another trial was to begin, Jan. 22. In the first trial, a jury deadlocked on whether former Pittsburgh police patrolman David Derbish used excessive force during a Nov. 2012 traffic stop, which ended in Ford being shot five times and paralyzed.
“After five years of arduous litigation, all parties are pleased to announce that we have reached an amicable resolution in the federal lawsuit Leon Ford brought following the November 11, 2012 shooting incident,” Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto said in a statement, Jan. 17. “The City has agreed to pay Mr. Ford and his attorneys $5.5 million. This settlement is in the best interest of Mr. Ford, Officer Derbish and the City of Pittsburgh, and will provide all involved the closure needed to move forward in a positive direction.”
Ford, in an exclusive interview with the New Pittsburgh Courier back in late November 2017, told Courier reporter Rob Taylor Jr. that the events that occurred between Ford and the police, along with the deadlocked jury, signal larger issues in this area.
“Here in Pittsburgh, being that I survived, being that I’ve committed my life to having a positive impact on the community, Pittsburgh could really be leading this charge and really be an innovation city (representing everyone) instead of creating this divide. The way the city has handled this case and has caused a larger divide, this is something that we can’t afford.”
Ford continued: “A lot of people are upset, there’s a lot of people who are not pleased with leadership, and I just believe that there’s ways for us to move forward without causing more pain to the citizens of Pittsburgh.”
The New Pittsburgh Courier will have more details as they become available.