Scott Olsen was one of the major personalities of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Olsen, a 26-year-old U.S. military veteran, was critically injured in an October 2011 protest as a member of Occupy Oakland.
Olsen was hit by a non-lethal projectile that was fired by a police officer who was clearing the park where the protesters had been based for several weeks. The projectile hit Olsen in the head, fracturing his skull, breaking his neck vertebrae and swelling his brain.
In response to the injuries sustained by Olsen, the city of Oakland has issued the man a $4.5 million settlement.
At the time of the incident, the story was a symbol of the United States’ violence against its own people. Olsen had served two tours in Iraq, only to be critically wounded by law enforcement officials in his home country.
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According to Democracy Now!, Olsen claimed that he was simply glad that the legal proceedings had finished.
“It has been a very stressful experience having to deal with it. So, for that reason alone, I’m happy that it’s over. And yeah, part of me does wish we had gone to trial, but this is what’s going to work out for me better, I think, and hopefully for pushing forward for change in Oakland police policy,” Olsen said.
According to RT, $1.4 million of the settlement is going to be taken directly from Oakland’s budget, while the remainder of the sum is going to be taken from the city’s insurance policy.
City attorney Barbara Parker explained that the settlement was fair and just considering the circumstances.
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“Mr. Olsen suffered a tragic injury that will affect him for the rest of his life. This settlement will save the city the far greater costs of a trial and potentially much higher judgement. This is a fair settlement given the facts of the case and the significant injuries Mr. Olsen sustained,” Parker said.