Seattle paying $15,000 to felon caught with gun

SEATTLE — The city of Seattle will pay $15,000 to settle a civil rights lawsuit from a felon who was caught carrying a gun.

Under other circumstances, the discovery on handgun on Charles Shateek Smith in 2009 would have sent the felon to prison for at least 15 years as an armed career criminal.

But federal judges found Officer Benjamin Kelly had no right to arrest or stop Smith at the time for jaywalking, so the city decided to settle the lawsuit.

The Seattle Times reported that $5,000 of the settlement will go to Smith’s lawyers and $10,000 will be placed into a trust for Smith. He is in prison for a 2010 burglary and assault conviction and scheduled for release in 2020.

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