[UPDATE] Tallahassee Settles Suit in Deadly Shooting

UPDATED 5.25.2011 6:45pm by Julie Montanaro

The city commission unanimously approved a $300,000 settlement in the wake of a deadly police shooting.

"It was almost an execution style killing. That's not the sort of case that I would like to think the city wants to take to trial," said Bashimam family attorney Rick Johnson afterward.

"There's a sense of relief, a sense of closure as much as possible for something like this. I can go ahead and move forward with my life," said Bashimam's then-girlfriend Melissa Dixon.

Neither the city nor the officer admits any wrongdoing as part of the settlement.

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UPDATE 5-25 5:08 pm

Tallahassee, FL - Tallahassee city commissioners unanimously approve $300,000 settlement with Bashimam family.

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[UPDATE] 5-25 Noon -

Tallahassee city commissioners will vote tonight on a controversial settlement in a deadly police shooting.

In a special meeting, the Tallahassee City Commission met for one hour behind closed doors to discuss the Bashimam settlement. The commission asked questions and discussed the proposed settlement. Commissioners are expected to vote tonight.

A Tallahassee police officer shot and killed 25-year old Nabel Bashimam when he tried to arrest him on some outstanding warrants back in August of 2006. Bashimam's family and girlfriend sued in federal court claiming it was excessive force. The city was poised to vote on a proposed $300,000 settlement a couple of weeks ago, But commissioners put the brakes on that because they needed more information. This morning they met with the city attorney behind closed doors to get it.

"Obviously we are deeply sorry for an incident that resulted in the loss of life regardless of what the situation may have been. We understand however that our officers have a job to do to serve a protect in this community. barring all of that, it's important to gather as much facts especially when you are acting as we are in our capacity in the city commission," says Tallahassee Commissioner Andrew Gillum.

City commissioners are expected to vote on the proposed settlement this afternoon.

If city commissioners decide against the settlement then both the city and the Bashimam family will have to ask a federal judge to put it back on the court docket.
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[UPDATE] 5-25 10:50am -

In a special meeting, the Tallahassee City Commission met for one hour behind closed doors to discuss the Bashimam settlement. The commission asked questions and discussed the proposed settlement. Commissioners are expected to vote tonight.

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[UPDATE] 5-25 - 10:10am -

A special meeting of the Tallahassee City Commission is taking place today. The only agenda item is to discuss settlement negotiations in Denise Bashimam versus the City of Tallahassee.

WCTV has a reporter at the Tallahassee city Hall. Stay with WCTV for details.
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[UPDATE] 5-19 -

A special meeting of the Tallahassee City Commission will take place on Wednesday, May 25, at 9 a.m. The meeting will be held in the Florida Room on the second floor of City Hall.

The only agenda item is to discuss settlement negotiations in Denise Bashimam versus the City of Tallahassee which is pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida as case number 4:10-cv-343.

The meeting is required to begin as a public meeting, to be followed by an attorney-client executive session which is closed to the public and the media.

The entire attorney-client executive session will be recorded by a certified court reporter. The transcript will be made part of the public record upon conclusion of the litigation.

The individuals scheduled to attend the attorney-client executive session are Mayor John Marks, Commissioner Andrew Gillum, Commissioner Nancy Miller, Commissioner Mark Mustian, City Manager Anita Favors Thompson, Deputy City Attorney Lewis Shelley and a court reporter. (Commissioner Gil Ziffer is out of town.) The attorney-client executive session will last approximately 60 minutes.

Stay with WCTV for more as details develop.

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May 11, 2011 by Julie Montanaro

A settlement in a deadly Tallahassee Police shooting is apparently far from a done deal.

Late this afternoon, Tallahassee city commissioners decided to meet with attorneys behind closed doors before approving a $300,000 settlement with the family of Nabel Bashimam.

A date for that executive session has not been decided.

Initially the settlement was part of the commission's consent agenda which typically passes with a simple voice vote, but commissioner Andrew Gillum pulled the item, saying due to the complexity of the case, he wanted a briefing from lawyers first.

The city's deputy attorney says now one of two things can happen.

"If the commission approves it, then we will execute the settlement agreement and the case will be over. If the city commission decides not to approve the settlement, it will go back to federal court and we will be scheduling the case for a trial," deputy city attorney Lew Shelley said.

The Bashimam family attorney says a summary of the case given to city commissioners before the vote was “just wrong.”

“Based on that summary, I wouldn’t have voted for it either,” Rick Johnson said. “If they had been given an accurate summary, they would have said ‘We’re getting off cheap.’”

Johnson is still hopeful commissioners will okay the settlement once the attorney briefs them on the details of the case.

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May 10, 2011 by Julie Montanaro

The City of Tallahassee is poised to settle a federal lawsuit filed in the wake of a deadly police shooting.

Commissioners are expected to approve a settlement Wednesday night which will give the family of 25 year old Nabel Bashimam a $300,000 payout.

Bashimam was shot and killed by a police officer back in August 2006 when the officer tried to arrest Bashimam on some outstanding drug warrants.

According to police reports, at some point, Bashimam and the officer wound up fighting in the back of his pick up truck. Bashimam was shot and killed and another bullet shattered the cab window, spraying his girlfriend with glass.

The case was set for trial next month.

City Attorney Lew Shelley says the settlement addresses the claims of both Bashimam's family and his girlfriend. Shelley says the city opted to settle the suit, in part, because if jurors had sided with the family, legal fees alone could top $200,000.

A grand jury decided the officer involved in the shooting, Richard Pulido, was justified in his use of force that day.

Pulido had been working at TPD for a little over a year when the shooting take place. He is still on the force and is assigned to patrol.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous on May 27, 2011 at 09:22 AM
    wow, i'm sure you can move on now that you're 300,000 dollars richer. you've got to be kidding me.
  • by Reagan Republican on May 26, 2011 at 08:37 PM
    I hope the LAWYERS notified their clients that after attorney fees there will be very little cash left for them! But, maybe the family and girlfriend didn't file suit againt TPD for the money?? yeah right... City Comm. you are the talk of the town and I have yet to find one person that agrees with your decision. I guess I should go to the Leon County jail to see if the inmates in prison agree with your decision. You are the leaders of our community and you need to start having the courage to lead this community in a positive direction. Shame on your decision. Where is your sense of right from wrong????
  • by JIm Location: Gadsden County on May 26, 2011 at 07:11 PM
    Can anyone identify the botton feeding attorney Rick Johnson
  • by Anonymous on May 26, 2011 at 10:51 AM
    Why is everyone so mad at the plaintiff's lawyer. Obviously he raised some good points that contradicted the officer's account or else the city's lawyers wouldn't be settling. Why is that so bad?
    • reply
      by Jim on May 26, 2011 at 12:53 PM in reply to
      The city lawyer's caved. They don't have the cojones to defend a case in federal court. You state the plaintiff's lawyer, "he raised some good points that contradicted the officer's account". That a big jump to, "it was almost an execution style killing". What does almost mean? To brand an officer with this after the settlement statement is what one might expect from some bottom feeding attorney. I hope the officer has some type of legal recourse. The City of Tallahassee hung this officer out to dry.
      • reply
        by Jim II on May 27, 2011 at 07:52 AM in reply to Jim
        Actually, no Jim, the city did not. Were it not for one itty bitty tiny legal technicality this would have indeed been an execution. I agree that tax payers having to absorb this cost is not right. What should have happened is that the officer should be prosecuted for murder and then have lost a financial judgement for any penny he could have garnered for the rest of his life no matter the source. Oh, and NO. I am in no way what so ever associated or affiliated with the victim or his relatives. None - not any. But I do have first hand knowledge of the *actual* details.
        • reply
          by big shady on May 27, 2011 at 08:59 AM in reply to Jim II
          Please oh please do tell the "itty bitty tiny" legal technicality, that cleared this officer from "execution style murder". You do have first hand knowledge, right?
        • reply
          by big shady on May 27, 2011 at 09:29 AM in reply to Jim II
          BTW the cop went before a jury and was found NOT GUILTY before this laughable situation came about.
  • by big shady Location: East 90 on May 26, 2011 at 10:36 AM
    Well that just about puts the nail in the coffin for Tallanasty, the home of For Sale University, Gov. Slick Rick, and now the city where you can be handed 300 large for your son trying to kill a police officer!! Maybe I should have a kid, get him to do the same so I could afford to move away from (what has turned into) this DUMP of a town. I sit here shaking my head in disbeleif.
  • by Jim Location: Gadsden County on May 26, 2011 at 08:40 AM
    Shame city commissions on your vote. You caved to a dead criminal's family. I'm sure on the advise of the city attorney. What a wasted position. You left your police officer hanging in a vulnerable verbal position. The bottom feeding family attorney Rick Johnson stated afterward "It was almost an execution style killing". Why was the possibly of these type comments not address in the settlement? I hope the police officer considers some type legal action against this bottom feeding attorney. His statement is contrary to results of the investigations by law enforcement and a enpaneled grand jury. The girlfriend Melissa Dixon, you probably have already moved forward, if not, please do. Find yourself another loser.
  • by Frances Location: Tallahassee on May 26, 2011 at 07:42 AM
    This is wrong, wrong, wrong! We need to show these commissioners the door as soon as possible. They are not voting what the people want, and what's worse are on the side of the criminals! This officer was acquitted of any wrongdoing, so how on earth does his family deserve one penny??
  • by Horse shoes and hand grenades Location: tally on May 26, 2011 at 06:28 AM
    Rick Johnson...family's attorney..."It was almost an execution style killing"...Was it or wasn't it? I hope you at least took your wife out to dinner after your big win...
  • by Concerned Citizen Location: Tallahassee, FL on May 26, 2011 at 05:34 AM
    This is a slap in the face to all of the brave men and women who protect our city on a daily basis. Maybe the officer involved should sue the city for slandering his name, considering his use of force was justified according to a grand jury. As other posters have said, it is a dangerous precedent the city commission has set. The last thing we want is one of our police officers to hesitate next time they have to use force to protect their life or the lives of innocent bystanders.
  • by Ashamed on May 26, 2011 at 04:53 AM
    Great message that was just sent. Way to go City commissioners!
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