Everyday Injustice Podcast Episode 236: $7.5 Million Settlement in Antioch Positional Asphyxiation Death

Civil Rights Attorney John Burris announced a $7.5 million settlement against the Antioch, CA, Police in the 2020 death of Angelo Quinto.

Quinto, suffering from a mental health incident, was killed when police held him in a prone position similar to George Floyd for over ten minutes despite pleas from his mother.

John Burris said: “While no amount of money can make up for the tragic circumstances surrounding Angelos’s death, his family is to be commended for their unwavering commitment to improving the relationship between the community and Antioch police.”

He added, “The Quinto family took their pain and anguish and immediately challenged the City to reform its approach to engaging the mentally and emotionally impaired. Their efforts at partnering with the City have resulted directly or indirectly with (1) body-worn cameras, a mental health crisis team, a mobile crisis unit, a police review commission, and state legislation outlawing excited delirium.  The family efforts turned a heartbreak into a source of social justice activisms that will benefit the community for years to come. This is citizenship at its best.”

Assembly Bill 360 was passed and signed into law, banning the term “Excited Delirium,” and its corollaries, like “Agitated Delirium,” from being recognized as a valid medical diagnosis or cause of death in the State of California and prohibiting such terms from appearing on death certificates issued in the State of California.

The Vanguard talks with Civil Rights Attorney Ben Nisenbaum and father Robert Collins about what the settlement means to them, but also the changes to law and policy they were able to get—due in large measure to the organization and activism of Mr. Quinto’s surviving family members (Cassandra, Isabella, Andrei, and Robert), in partnership with Assemblyman Mike Gipson.

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