FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) _ A federal jury has awarded $23.1 million to a 22-year-old black man who was unarmed when he was shot and paralyzed by a Florida sheriff’s deputy.
Any award more than $200,000 must be approved by the Florida Legislature, however.
The six-woman, two-man jury ruled Wednesday that Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Sgt. Adams Lin violated Dontrell Stephens’ civil rights when he shot him in September 2013.
Lin had stopped Stephens for riding his bicycle into traffic.
Lin testified he shot Stephens four times because he reached for his waistband with his left hand and then flashed forward a dark object that he thought was a small handgun.
Video from the dashboard camera in Lin’s patrol car showed Stephens’ left hand was empty and a cellphone was in his right hand.
An appeal is expected.