Lawsuit demands prompted San Bernardino bankruptcy
(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.