Last Sunday’s editorial on the settlement of the lawsuit between a Gypsy family and the city of Spokane stated as fact some details that remain in dispute.
Spokane police dispute the Gypsy claim that officers sampled a family roast, forced females to disrobe and desecrated a Gypsy religious shrine during the search of the Marks household. These claims were laid out in the original Gypsy lawsuit but were denied in sworn statements made by police officers who were at the scene.
While the city lost some legal issues in its defense of the Spokane police, the Gypsy case also suffered significant legal setbacks during the appeals process. What began as a $59 million lawsuit against the city was settled out of court for $1.43 million, leaving open to debate the question of which side won or lost the most during the 11-year appeals process.
Many other issues related to this lawsuit could be disputed. That will be the work of scholars, law schools and storytellers.
Our hope is that this last stab at clarification will help all sides move beyond this case.
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