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Redmond reaches $7.5 million settlement with family of woman killed in police shooting

Andrea Thomas Churna, 39, was shot and killed by a Redmond police officer in September 2020.

REDMOND, Wash. — Editor's note: The above video ran on September 20, 2020.

The City of Redmond announced Wednesday it reached a $7.5 million settlement with the family of a woman who was shot and killed by a police officer in September 2020.

Andrea Thomas Churna, 39, was shot and killed on September 20, 2020 at the Modera Redmond apartment complex in the 8700 block of 161st Avenue Northeast. 

Redmond Police initially reported the woman "confronted officers with a handgun, multiple shots were fired and the suspect was struck several times."

On Wednesday, Redmond Police Chief Darrell Lowe explained that the information in that press release was inaccurate, and the woman was unarmed when she was shot and killed by the officer.

"While Churna was armed with a handgun earlier in the encounter with Redmond officers, when she was shot and killed in the hallway just outside of her apartment, Churna was unarmed. Following the shooting, the officers found Churna’s gun on the balcony of her apartment. I apologize to Andrea Thomas Churna's family and loved ones for the inaccurate statement made regarding the circumstances surrounding her death," a statement from Lowe reads in part.

In a special session Tuesday night, the Redmond City Council approved the $7.5 million settlement amount to Churna's family.

Lowe added that the policy in place at the time of the shooting prohibits him from revealing the specific internal findings "until the conclusion of the inquest process and an actual filing determination by the prosecutors' office."

Redmond police have updated their policies in wake of the incident, including "access to additional less-lethal options, implementing a body-worn and in-car camera program, and increasing mental health resources," according to Chief Lowe's statement.

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