George Floyd's Brother Says He Would Trade Anything to Have Him Alive After $27 Million Settlement Is Reached

A mural in New York City.
Sal Bono

It is the largest pretrial settlement ever for a civil rights claim, according to reports. Philonise Floyd said that the “nation needs healing. Our family needs healing.” 

The Minneapolis City Council approved Friday a $27 million civil settlement with the family of George Floyd over his death in police custody last year. The city council voted 13-0 to approve the settlement, which is the largest pretrial settlement ever for a civil rights claim. 

Floyd’s brother said at Friday’s press briefing that “If I could get him back, I would give all of this back,” according to reports. Floyd's family said they are grateful for the settlement, but said no amount of money could heal the pain of his loss, CBS News reported.

“I thank the state of Minnesota for getting this settlement taken care of. Even though my brother is not here, he’s here in my heart,” an emotional Philonise Floyd said while standing in front of the podium, surrounded by family attorney Benjamin Crump, family members and Mayor Jacob Frey, CNN reported

Philonise Floyd added that the “nation needs healing. Our family needs healing.” 

George Floyd's sister Bridgett Floyd said in a statement, "While we will never get our beloved George back, we will continue to work tirelessly to make this world a better, and safer, place for all.”

Bridgett spoke of the foundation she started in her brother's name to honor his legacy as a community-minded volunteer, CNN reported. 

The settlement directs $500,000 to be used to benefit the George Floyd Memorial site at 38th and Chicago in Minneapolis. 

Crump called the victory “one step on the journey to justice.”

“It’s going to be a long journey to justice,” he said. “This makes a statement that George Floyd deserved better than what we witnessed on May 25, 2020, that George Floyd’s life mattered, and that by extension, Black lives matter.”

L. Chris Stewart, who also worked on the legal team on behalf of the Floyd family, said the size of the settlement "changes evaluations and civil rights for a Black person when they die,” and “will make accountability happen,” the Associated Press reported.

In July, Floyd’s family filed the federal civil rights lawsuit against the city of Minneapolis, Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who kneeled on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, and three other officers that were charged in Floyd’s death. The civil suit alleged that officers violated Floyd’s rights when they restrained him, and the city permitted this culture of racism and excessive force by police. The officers denied all allegations of wrongdoing. 

The news comes as Judge Cahill has set aside three weeks for jury selection in the criminal trial of Chauvin, with opening statements planned no sooner than March 29, a report said. Chauvin has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Jury selection is on its fourth day. Seven people have been seated. Juror’s identities will be concealed and will not be shown during the court proceedings. One potential juror, a recent college graduate, was dismissed on Friday after she acknowledged that she had a negative view of the defendant, according to the AP.