Family of Black girls handcuffed by police, held at gunpoint reach $1.9M settlement

The four Black girls lay facedown in a parking lot, crying “no” and “mommy” as a police officer who had pointed her gun at them then bent down to handcuff two of their wrists. The youngest wore a pink tiara as she held onto her teenage cousin’s hand.

The 6-year-old Lovely watched as her mother, Brittney Gilliam, was led to a patrol car in handcuffs after she shouted in frustration at the police, who mistakenly believed the car Gilliam was driving was stolen.

Over three years later, the Denver suburb of Aurora has agreed to a $1.9 million settlement with Gilliam and the girls to resolve a lawsuit that claimed the police officers’ actions were evidence of “profound and systematic” racism, a lawyer for the family, David Lane, announced Monday.

The settlement saved the girls the trauma of having to relive what happened during a trial, Lane said. The money will be evenly divided among Gilliam and the four girls, with the girls’ portions being placed into annuities so the money will grow by the time they access it when they turn 18, Lane said.

“All parties are very satisfied with this settlement,” he said.