SEATTLE — The city of Seattle has settled with the family of a man killed by police on New Year's Eve in 2018. The family of Iosia Faletogo will receive $515,000, according to court documents.
“No amount of money could ever replace the precious life that was violently taken from our family. Especially, from Iosia's two sons." Lisa Elisara, Faletogo’s mother, said in a statement Thursday through the family’s attorney. "Maybe now the world can see something terribly bad did happen that night Dec. 31, 2018; That shouldn't have.”
The incident started as a traffic stop on Aurora Ave. N. just after 5 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2018. The driver, Faletogo, pulled over and then ran on foot.
Officers caught up to Faletogo, and a physical struggle ensued. Police said the driver displayed a handgun during the struggle, and one officer fired at the man.
Falatogo died at the scene. No officers were injured.
The department’s Office of Police Accountability found the officers’ actions justified. Body-camera video appeared to show Faletogo had dropped a handgun in a struggle with officers and was unarmed just before the fatal shot was fired.
Falatogo’s family argued he wasn't holding a gun in his hand at the time he was shot, questioning the justification of the shooting.
Just days after the shooting, the family said they would fight for justice and transparency in the investigation of the shooting.
"He doesn’t have a voice anymore, but we are his voice now, and we are going to continue to speak for Iosia, and he deserves justice," cousin Kiana Keni said at the time.
Keni spoke alongside other family members and the group Not This Time, a Seattle organization focused on reducing fatal police violence.
Family members remembered Iosia Faletogo, 36, as a loving father of two boys who had dreams of becoming a music producer.
“Iosia was a good, loving father, son, nephew & friend. He will be truly missed by many,... every day. Rest in peace my beloved son,” Elisara said Thursday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.