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City to pay $6.5M settlement to family of unarmed black man killed by white officer

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Walter Scott is seen running away as officer Michael Slager fires at him, killing him.

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A city in North Carolina has reached a $6.5 million settlement with the family of an unarmed black man shot to death earlier this year by a white city police officer.

The North Charleston City Council approved the settlement by a 10-0 vote Thursday.

The council had met several times in the past few months to receive advice from city attorney Brady Hair on a potential lawsuit by the family of Walter Scott.

A video shows Officer Michael Slager, who is white, shooting eight times at 50-year-old Walter Scott on April 4 as Scott is running away.

A bystander recorded the shooting with a cellphone.

The bystander whose cellphone video of the police shooting put an officer in jail on a murder charge has come forward and explained why he started recording the crime scene.

Feidin Santana told NBC News that he was walking to work and approached the scene because he noticed police officer Michael Slager controlling Scott on the ground. He began recording when he heard the sound of a Taser. He says “Mr. Scott was trying just to get away from the Taser.”

The video then shows Slager firing eight times at the back of the unarmed man, until he crumples to the ground about 30 feet away.

Slager was indicted on a murder charge in June and a judge refused to set bond last month.