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Protestors Justin Howell and Anthony Evans were awarded a combined $10 million after being shot by bean bag rounds at the 2020 George Floyd protests in Austin. (Emma Freer/Austonia)

The city of Austin will pay a record-high $8 million to settle a federal lawsuit with Justin Howell, a then-20-year-old student at Texas State University who suffered head injuries from "less-lethal" bean bag rounds shot by Austin police officers in the 2020 George Floyd protests. The city will also award $2 million to Anthony Evans, who was also shot by APD officers during the protests.

The combined $10 million settlement was approved in a unanimous vote from Austin City Council Thursday. Howell's $8 million is by far the most ever rewarded in an Austin excessive force case. Prior to Howell's case, Austin paid a then-record of $3.25 million settlement to the family of David Joseph, a teenager who was naked and unarmed when APD officer Geoffrey Freeman shot and killed him in 2016.

Both Howell and Evans suffered head injuries from bean bag munition in the summer 2020 protests. Officers aiming at a protestor who reportedly hurled a water bottle at police shot Howell in the head instead, causing a skull fracture and brain damage that resulted in three weeks of treatment in intensive care.

Evans was also shot in the face with the lead-filled sacks, causing a broken jaw that required emergency surgery.

The two settlements come as a grand jury considers charges against up to 18 Austin police officers on a dozen excessive force cases after 30 protesters were injured in the summer of 2020. Like Howell and Evans, six of the twelve cases involve shots fired to the head.

The jury is expected to conclude its investigation by the end of the month.


Weekend events: Festivals and fall fun
Austin Foodie Fest

🗓 Saturday

🍁 Fall Festival and Pumpkin Patch

Usher in the much-awaited fall weather with a day trip to this quaint farm, complete with a pumpkin patch, corn maze, and more!

10 a.m - 7 p.m. | Barton Springs Farm

☕️Austin Coffee Festival

If you consider yourself a coffee lover, this weekend's coffee festival is a must! Enjoy all types of coffee drinks, beans, and snacks to go with the experience.

9 a.m - 4:30 p.m | Fair Market, 1100 E 5th St.

🎉Fiesta Georgetown

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a short road trip to Georgetown where a city-wide Fiesta will be hosted.

12 p.m - 4:00 p.m | 808 Martin Luther King Jr. St., Georgetown, TX

🗓 Sunday

🍔 Austin Foodie Fest

Eat your heart out at this showcase of local food trucks and eateries downtown, featuring live music, giveaways, and more.

1 p.m - 9 p.m. | Republic Square

🌅 Sunset Yoga/ Moonlight swim at Barton springs

Take a night-time dip in one of the classic swim spots in Austin along with a relaxing Yoga session to get you centered and ready for the week to come.

6: 30 p.m | Barton Springs

🎵 Music at Mozarts

Enjoy live music with a lakeside view with the On The Deck music series over the next few weekends. Grab your favorite drink and soak up the vibes to refresh yourself this weekend.

Saturday and Sunday evening | Mozart's Cafe - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd

🎭Austin Comedy Showcase

In the mood for a laugh? Stop by The Green Jay for an 8 p.m show and experience some of Austin's comedy talents. Advance tickets are $15 and attendees are free to bring their own food.

8 p.m | The Green Jay - 711 Red River Street
Fall camping: Camp Fimfo Waco offers one-of-a-kind experiences in the heart of Texas
Camp Fimfo Waco

Camp Fimfo Waco, a brand new camping resort, is kicking off football and fall camping season in style! With top-notch amenities, premium accommodations, and 10 weekends of fall fun, there’s no better place to have a fall camping getaway, especially if you’re a Baylor football fan!

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