Protester settles with city of St. Paulby Laura Yuen, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — An antiwar activist who sued St. Paul after he was arrested outside of a rally for Barack Obama last summer says he has reached a settlement with the city.
Mick Kelly says the city will pay him $5,000 to resolve the lawsuit. Officers arrested the Minneapolis man while he was handing out leaflets outside the Xcel Energy Center in June. The fliers promoted a scheduled protest march during the Republican National Convention.
"What happened to me was wrong. I came to the Obama rally to leaflet and encourage people to protest at the Republican National Convention against the war, and I was arrested," said Kelly. "I think the settlement I reached with the city is pretty clear. The city hasn't admitted to wrongdoing, but nonetheless I'm being paid $5,000. I think that speaks volumes."
Kelly was originally seeking $75,000 in damages.
St. Paul City Attorney John Choi emphasized that the city admits to no wrongdoing. Choi says Kelly first sought to resolve the lawsuit by settling out of court.
"And $5,000 in the world of civil litigation is really nominal," said Choi. "It really says more, in my opinion, about the weakness of their case against the city. Really, any lawyer would know that."
Kelly says he still plans to move forward with a separate lawsuit, alleging police officers injured him when they shot him at close range with a non-lethal weapon during a protest on the final day of the RNC.