The family of an 18-year-old man shot and killed by Santa Ana Police Department
(SAPD) officers under questionable circumstances in January 2011 has won a financial settlement claim, according to court records.
Lawyers for the estate of Martin Ruiz asserted in a federal civil rights lawsuit that cops attempted to arrest Ruiz "without reasonable suspicion or probable cause" and then repeatedly shot him in displays of "excessive deadly force."
City officials initially reacted to the December 2011 lawsuit filed at Orange County's Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse by denying any wrongdoing and declaring that officers have "complete immunity" to kill citizens.
But that stance may not have prevailed after a thorough review of the evidence.
This month, the city agreed to a pre-trial settlement before a jury could hear the case in U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter's courtroom.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
SAPD has numerous superb, veteran officers but this circumspect, fatal police shooting wasn't an isolated event.