The City of Loveland and Karen Garner have officially agreed to settle her claim against the city following her violent, publicly scrutinized 2020 arrest.

According to a statement from the City released Wednesday morning (Sept. 8), the City of Loveland and Karen Garner have agreed to settle her claim against the City for $3 million.

Once finalized, the settlement will end Garner’s pending federal lawsuit, which was posed as a result of her June 2020 arrest by officers of the Loveland Police Department (LPD).

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“The settlement with Karen Garner will help bring some closure to an unfortunate event in our community but does not upend the work we have left to do. We extend a deep and heartfelt apology to Karen Garner and her family for what they have endured as a result of this arrest,” said Loveland City Manager Steve Adams.

“We know we did not act in a manner that upholds the values, integrity, and policies of the City and police department, and we are taking the necessary steps to make sure these actions are never repeated.”

On June 26, 2020, Walmart employees called the police on 73-year-old Karen Garner to report that she had tried to walk out of the store with $13 worth of merchandise.

Three former officers, Austin Hopp, Daria Jalali, and community service officer Tyler Blackett
— all of whom were on scene during Garner's 2020 arrest— resigned from the Loveland Police Department on Friday, April 30 after outrage sparked nationally over the arrest of the 73-year-old, whose family believes that she simply forgot to pay for the items and was confused due to her dementia.

“There is no excuse, under any circumstances, for what happened to Ms. Garner. We have agreed on steps we need to take to begin building back trust. While these actions won’t change what Ms. Garner experienced, they will serve to improve this police department and hopefully restore faith that the LPD exists to serve those who live in and visit Loveland,” Chief Bob Ticer said.

Ticer listed multiple changes, as per the statement, to department policy and practices following the arrest, including:

  • An updated and improved use-of-force review process that will include faster response times and review by an assistant city attorney as well as City of Loveland Human Resources personnel.
  • Plans to launch LPD Listens tours, an opportunity for City residents to share and engage with Loveland Police Department command staff.
  • Collaboration with City Council on ways to expand and enhance LPD’s mental health co-responder program with SummitStone Health Partners.

For more information regarding this litigation and next steps, you can visit the Garner V. City of Loveland webpage here.

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