Chino city council awarded a near $3 million settlement Tuesday to the family of a 49-year-old Fontana man shot and killed last year by a Chino police officer during the serving of a search warrant at a suspected illegal marijuana grow house in Chino.
Following Tuesday’s closed session meeting, city attorney Fred Galante announced the council’s decision to authorize the settlement agreement to Pin Mein Lin and Alan Bin Wang in exchange for full release of claims and no admission of wrongdoing or liability.
Mr. Galante said the city will pay about $1 million of the $2.99 million settlement from its self-insured retention funds. The remainder will be paid by the city’s liability insurance.
Chief Simmons said investigations on the shooting are ongoing by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, the Chino Police Department, and the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s office.
“Once the investigations are concluded, they will be reviewed to see if any policy changes should be made,” he said.
The Chino Police Department’s Special Enforcement Team was serving a search warrant on July 3, 2019 on the house that was subject to neighbors’ complaints of suspected drug trafficking and marijuana cultivation.
A police body cam video shows Chino Police Sgt. Derek Bishop, a 16-year veteran of the department, firing one shot at Li Xi Wang, a Chinese immigrant who appeared to be hiding behind a door when armed officers were searching the home in the 6800 block of Rockrose Street.
Mr. Wang died at a hospital.
Sgt. Bishop was placed on a three-day paid administrative leave, which is standard protocol after an officer-involved shooting, according to Chief Simmons.
The sergeant returned to work at the end of that period and remains employed at the Chino Police Department, the chief said.
The video first shows officers banging on the front door, shouting they were with the Chino Police Department and had a search warrant.
At the front door, they saw a woman, identified as Ai Yue Cai.
She was handcuffed and asked several times if anyone was inside.
She continued to shake her head no, the video shows.
When no one else came to the door, officers forced their way inside with a handheld battering ram.
Ms. Cai was arrested on suspicion of marijuana cultivation and grand theft.
The video was made public by Chino Police Aug. 23.
Days later, an attorney for the claimants said the officers' demands and warnings were not understood by Mr. Wang and Ms. Cai because they did not speak English.
Chief Simmons said officers seized a combined 1,500 marijuana plants from the Chino home and another house in Fontana during its investigation, along with $35,000 in cash and evidence of grand theft totaling more than $105,000.