$2 million settlement for family of mentally ill Filipino shot dead by cops
LONG BEACH — After 2 and 1/2 years, the case involving a Filipino man shot to death by police officers has reached a settlement.
Attorneys for the Saycon family announced that they have finalized a $2 million dollar settlement with the city of Long Beach, CA for the 2016 shooting of 39-year-old, Bicol-born Mharloun.
Mharloun, who had mental health issues for the past 15 years, was at a Long Beach casino in December 2015.
While his schizophrenia was mostly under control, he would have relapses — including on the night of the incident on when he was holding a knife in the casino lobby.
According to lawyers, while the casino staff said Saycon was passively sitting and not considered a threat, they called in police hoping to escort him out.
The family then claimed that excessive force was used, and eventually police shot and killed him.
The family went on to file a lawsuit against the city of Long Beach in March 2016.
“He needed help and the help didn’t come, but instead the worst came,” said his father Khanly Saycon.
“When the police officers came in they did not even attempt to negotiate or try to find out what’s going on. As I’ve said, they came in with their guns drawn. Employed a level of force with the evidence shows which is clearly excessive,” said Attorney Joe Saya.
Shortly before the scheduled November 2017 trial, the city council approved it and the settlement was finalized last month.
The civil settlement avoids both the city and family from going to court.
Under the settlement, the city of Long Beach does not accept responsibility for Saycon’s death.
In their press release, Saycon’s parents say that all they want is their son back, adding that they hope this case can save lives by holding police more accountable.
The settlement essentially puts an end to the civil proceedings.
However, the Saycon family is hoping that Mharloun’s life can continue to have an impact, especially when it comes to police officers and how they interact with a mentally ill person.