For Noe’s Family, TASER Case Settlement Means Chance to Move Forward
We were proud to represent Noe Niño de Rivera’s family in their pursuit of justice. We are very pleased with the result—we secured a settlement of $775,000. This settlement represents resolution for the family and could have implications for future TASER cases.
The case began when Noe was tasered by Deputy Randy McMillan. A video clip of the incident shows Noe falling and hitting his head on the concrete floor. He was not disobeying, fighting, holding weapons, hitting anyone, or behaving aggressively.
Noe was in a coma for fifty-two days. He sustained severe traumatic brain injuries, had multiple emergency surgeries, and awoke having missed almost two months of his life—with many more months of recovery ahead of him. CNN story here.
As this Statesman article discusses, the deputy was not held accountable for his actions taken that day. He faced no disciplinary action and was cleared of all charges. We feel that Noe deserved compensation for the trauma that he went through. He is not the same person that he used to be.
We went through ongoing negotiations before reaching this settlement. Neither the family nor Bastrop County wanted to take this case to trial: the family needed closure and Bastrop County was not confident that a jury would ignore Noe’s side of the story. Ultimately, this TASER case settlement is an unprecedented victory.
Should tasers be used in schools? The debate is likely to go on, but this case might just be the first step in acknowledging that, in this instance, a TASER meant that an otherwise harmless hallway scuffle turned into a permanent, life-threatening brain injury.
We are glad to report that Noe, with the help of an inpatient brain injury rehabilitation program, is recovering. He is a resilient young man who will be able to live a normal life—albeit a changed one. We wish him and his family all the best. This three-quarter million dollar settlement will give them closure and the ability to move forward with their lives.