#Maryland's Board of Public Works has unanimously approved a settlement in the lawsuit against the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner regarding the death of #AntonBlack five years ago. Black's family will receive $100,000, while $135,000 will be allocated to lawyers representing the Coalition for Justice for Anton Black. The settlement brings about significant changes to the Office of the State Medical Examiner, including explicit guidelines for reviewing in-custody deaths and adopting national investigative standards. The National Association of Medical Examiners requires a death to be ruled a homicide when intentional conduct by another person is identified.
Changes also ensure impartial investigations free from improper #police influence, with only employees of the medical examiner's office providing input on autopsies. Completed autopsy results must be approved by the chief or deputy medical examiner before release, and families receiving reports have the right to seek corrections or review findings. The settlement, considered a positive first step, resolves all open lawsuits related to Anton Black's death in police custody. However, community members are urged to stay vigilant for effective implementation.
Black, 19 at the time, died in 2018 after being restrained by police officers in Greensboro. The settlement is part of a broader effort to address misrepresentations surrounding deaths in police custody and promote transparency. Maryland's legislature previously passed police reforms in 2021, including Anton's Law, which enhances public transparency on disciplinary records of police officers. The settlement marks progress but is viewed as just the beginning of addressing systemic issues and bringing justice to families seeking truth about police-involved deaths.
Link: Maryland Matters