Yale Daily News

In April 2019, a Hamden police officer and Yale police officer shot at two Black New Haven residents, Stephanie Washington and Paul Witherspoon. Two and a half years later, the town of Hamden has reached a settlement with Witherspoon. 

On Nov. 18, the Hamden Legislative Council held a special meeting to vote on the settlement, according to the New Haven Independent. Both the city and Witherspoon have signed confidentiality agreements and are unable to comment on the agreement, which will not be final until signed by both parties. As of Thursday night, the parties have not yet signed.

In the early morning of April 16, 2019, Washington and Witherspoon were sitting in their car at the intersection of Dixwell Avenue and Argyle Street. Hamden police officer Devin Eaton fired 13 shots at the couple and Yale officer Terrance Pollock fired three.

The shooting set off a series of protests in New Haven in 2019, and protestors said their names during anti-police brutality protests this summer. Two days after the shooting, Witherspoon announced that he would begin preparing a lawsuit against Hamden and Yale University.

On Aug. 4 of this year, Washington filed a lawsuit against Eaton, Pollock, Yale, Hamden and New Haven. The lawsuit was filed to the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut and seeks more than $15,000 dollars in damages.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut told the News in an email that they “plan to send a Freedom of Information request to the town seeking settlement details in order to be able to learn more.”

Hamden Mayor Curt Leng and five members of the Hamden Legislative Council did not respond to a request for comment. 

There are 15 members serving on the Hamden Legislative Council.

Talat Aman | talat.aman@yale.edu