Family of L.A. teen fatally shot by sheriff's deputy to receive $3.75 million in settlement

"Fearing for his life," an officer fired at the 16-year-old 13 times, a county summary said.

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By Elisha Fieldstadt

The family of a Los Angeles teenager who was fatally shot by a sheriff's deputy last year will receive $3.75 million in a settlement of a civil lawsuit brought against the county and the sheriff's department.

Anthony Weber, 16, was shot by a Los Angeles Sheriff's Department deputy on Feb. 4, 2018, after the department got a call from someone who said a black teen was pointing a gun at him. The incident was reported in an L.A. neighborhood where gang activity is prevalent, according to a summary by county officials.

When deputies arrived, they said they saw Weber with a gun and instructed him to raise his hands, which he did, the summary said. He then ran away, with his hands straight in the air.

One of the deputies said that as he chased Weber, the teen turned around, "then reached toward his front right waistband," the summary said. "Fearing for his life," the deputy fired at Weber 13 times.

Los Angeles County agreed to pay $3.75 million to the family of Anthony Weber, killed by a L.A. County Sheriff's deputy in February 2018.Courtesy of Weber family

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Weber's parents and the mother of his child filed a lawsuit against the county and the sheriff's department in May of 2018, seeking compensatory damages in excess of $10 million for wrongful death and other complaints.

The Board of Supervisors for the County of Los Angeles recommended on May 2, 2019, that the suit be settled for $3.75 million, and approved the settlement Tuesday, according to court documents. The board instructed that the money come from the budget of the sheriff's department.

The settlement was recommended by the board "due to the high risks and uncertainties of litigation."

One of the attorneys for Weber's family, Gregory A. Yates, told NBC News Friday that the settlement was "bittersweet."

The suit alleged that after Weber was shot, deputies did not call for medical attention in a timely manner and then kept medical responders from the scene, even though he was "bleeding profusely and had obvious serious injuries."

Weber's family maintains that the teen was unarmed and "posed no imminent threat of death or serious injury," the suit said.

Deputies couldn't find the gun they said they saw on Weber, but a Smith & Wesson pistol that witnesses say belonged to the teen was found at a nearby house, according to the summary of the incident.

"The deputies immediately cordoned off the area, and it would have been impossible for anyone from the crowd to have taken the guns from the enclosed area where Anthony was shot. No gun was ever found at the scene," Yates said Friday.

A statement released by the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department shortly after the suit was filed said it was "frustrating" the department could not comment on the evidence in the case while it was pending, NBC Los Angeles reported. "We have watched as individuals hurl allegations or immediately assume that deputy-involved shootings and the aftermath are signs of police misconduct," the statement said.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office is still investigating the shooting to determine whether the use of force was justified or if there was criminal misconduct, according to an office spokesman. When that investigation is complete, the Sheriff's Department Internal Affairs Bureau will investigate the incident to determine whether any administrative misconduct was at play, according to court documents.

The county of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department and their attorneys in the suit did not reply to requests for comment.