3.4M deal struck in deadly Pima County SWAT raid
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Pima County will pay up and it won't be pocket change. Millions of dollars will go to Jose Guerena's family, all part of a settlement stemming from a deadly SWAT raid in 2011.
Guerena's family settled their lawsuit with four police agencies for $3.4 million.
Vanessa Guerena, Jose's widow had initially filed a $20 million claim against Pima County and the towns of Marana, Sahuarita and Oro Valley. All those jurisdictions had officers on the SWAT team.
Here's how it breaks down: $2.75 million from Pima County, $720,000 from Marana, Oro Valley will pay $260,000 and $100,000 from Sahuarita.
Guerena family attorney told 9OYS on September 5th that the settlement proves the sheriff's department accepts liability and responsibility for their "bad acts" that day.
Not so says a spokesman with the department. Deputy Jesus Banuelos released this statement:
The Pima County Sheriff’s Department strongly believes the events of May 5, 2011, were unfortunate and tragic, but the officers performed that day in accordance with their training and nationally recognized standards. Therefore, the Department does not agree with this settlement. However, legal advisors and insurers recognize the unpredictable resolution of disputes at trial regarding police conduct and even well accepted police tactics. As a result, well established business and insurance principles call for compromise and the resolution of disputed cases to mitigate risk and avoid the expense of a trial.
The deal was approved by the Pima County Board of Supervisors. 9OYS reached out to several supervisors Friday. No one returned calls or was willing to comment on the deal.