Lawsuit demands prompted San Bernardino bankruptcy

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san berdoo city1 Lawsuit demands prompted San Bernardino bankruptcy

(AP Image)

(AP) – San Bernardino’s attorney says the city was pushed into early bankruptcy by a lawyer’s demand to pay settlements over police killings.

The city, which is facing a nearly $46 million budget gap, filed for Chapter 9 protection on Wednesday – two weeks earlier than planned.

City Attorney James Penman tells the San Bernardino Sun that the city wanted to avoid having assets seized after an attorney tried to collect $1.4 million. The money was promised to settle three lawsuits claiming police used excessive force.

Penman says the city wouldn’t have made its next payroll if a judge had forced it to pay now. Attorney Dale Galipo says he’s disappointed and will keep trying to collect for his clients.

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