Spokane agrees to settle police beating lawsuit

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SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) -- Spokane Mayor David Condon says the city has agreed to mediation to settle the lawsuit filed by the family of a man beaten to death by a police.

Condon said Thursday an out-of-court settlement is in the best interest of the city.

The lawsuit filed two years ago by the family of Otto Zehm sought $2.9 million in damages.

Zehm was a 36-year-old mentally disabled man who worked as a janitor. He was beaten by police who suspected him of stealing money at a convenience store ATM. He died two days later in 2006. Last year, Officer Karl F. Thompson was convicted of violating Zehm's civil rights by using excessive force and then lying about it to investigators.