After nearly 24 years, the City of New Orleans has agreed to a $1.5 million settlement to the children of a Black woman whose murder was orchestrated at the hands of a corrupt police officer.
The lawsuit over Kim Grove’s murder was settled last Thursday, while a signed “consent judgment” was filed in federal court Monday, April 23, The Times-Picayune reported. The agreement comes almost 24 years after Groves’ killing was ordered by New Orleans police officer Len Davis, who was angry over a complaint the mother of three made against him.
As part of the settlement, the city has agreed to pay $1.5 million to Groves’ children over the course of four years.
“Under Mayor [Mitch] Landrieu’s leadership, the City has prioritized resolving legacy police misconduct lawsuits in order to take responsibility, begin healing, and bring closure to the victims and their loved ones,” City Attorney Rebecca Dietz said of the settlement in a written statement on Wednesday.
“The murder of Kim Groves is a dark and shameful chapter in our city’s history,” Dietz added.
Groves, 32, was shot in the head just blocks from her home on October 13, 1994. The fatal attack came less than 24 hours after she filed a complaint against Davis, claiming she saw the crooked cop pistol whip a teen the day before. After being tipped off about the complaint, prosecutors said Davis conspired with a known drug dealer and hitman to kill the mother.
A federal probe into a drug racket operated by Davis prior to Groves’ murder revealed that he and other officers were being paid to protect drug dealers, according to the Times-Picayune. Groves’ death was plotted and celebrated over phone lines tapped by the FBI, prosecutors said.
In 2011, Groves’ son, Corey Groves once said he was so upset over his mother’s death that he “desperately wanted to get stopped by an NOPD officer so that I could either kill one of them or force one of them to kill me.” He said those feelings have since subsided but noted he and his siblings have suffered severe financial hardship since their mother’s death.
“Since 1994, myself and also my sisters have had children of our own and supporting our growing families hasn’t been an easy task, mainly without the guidance of the people who showed us what family is all about, but also financial hardship has (hurt) all three of us terribly,” he told the court last week.
Davis and two others were ultimately arrested and charged in Groves’ death. The disgraced officer is currently on death row while trigger man Paul “Cool” Hardy is serving life behind bars. A third man who hid the gun 9mm handgun used in the killing was also sentenced to life in prison, according to the newspaper.