COLORADO SPRINGS - After settling a racial profiling lawsuit, which caused the city of Colorado Springs to pay over $200,000 to the Brown family, the police department has made a statement on the case.
On Thursday night, the department said the following:
"The Colorado Springs Police Department, together with the Office of the City Attorney, made the difficult decision to settle the Brown case. Although CSPD sincerely believes the claims of racial profiling were unfounded, the decision to settle was based on comparative analysis of the high cost of legal proceedings and the risk of financial liability in the event the city did not prevail in every aspect of the lawsuit."
The department also stated that ACLU has often "inaccurately portrayed CSPD as a department that routinely violates citizens' rights" and that when ACLU was proven wrong, they did not “set the record straight."
ACLU of Colorado legal director Mark Silverstein, also the lead attorney in the Brown case, defends the organization's stance.
"We've criticized the CSPD for being too quick to point a gun, to use handcuffs and for conducting pat-down frisks when confronting young men of color," he said. "They use force and ask questions later."
The suit was filed by the ACLU on behalf of brothers Ryan and Benjamin Brown, and it alleged that the brothers were pulled over because they were black men driving in a predominantly white neighborhood and that police handcuffed, searched and detained them at gunpoint and with Tasers out without legal justification.
"We hope this settlement sends a message to police officers and departments to hold themselves accountable for misconduct," Silverstein said.
For the Colorado Springs Police Department's full response to the case, click here.