A dead robber's mother has reached a confidential monetary settlement in her lawsuit against the south Oklahoma City pharmacy where her son was fatally shot.
The lawsuit was settled for at least $100,000, sources told The Oklahoman.
Cleta A. Jennings is getting 65 percent of the money left over after her attorneys are paid. The Oklahoma Department of Human Services will get the rest.
“I'm just glad it's over,” Jennings said Wednesday after a probate hearing over the settlement.
Jennings last year filed the wrongful-death lawsuit against pharmacist Jerome Ersland and his employer, Reliable Discount Pharmacy, in Oklahoma County District Court.
Ersland was found guilty of first-degree murder last year for fatally shooting Antwun Parker, 16, inside the pharmacy. Ersland is appealing his conviction.
The pharmacy's insurance company already has tendered the check to Jennings' attorneys, an attorney for the insurance company told a judge during the probate hearing.
Because of the secrecy surrounding the settlement, it was not known if the insurance company paid all of the settlement or if the pharmacy paid, too.
Ersland is serving a life sentence in prison. He did not pay any of the settlement and did not consent to it.
Parker and a friend,
The men gave Ingram a gun, according to testimony in the criminal case. Parker was unarmed.
The pharmacist shot Parker in the head as the boy pulled on a mask inside the store, according to surveillance recordings. He then chased after Ingram who ran outside. He next came back inside the store, got a second gun and shot Parker five more times.
Ersland admitted to the shooting but gave conflicting accounts of what happened.
Prosecutors at his trial contended he went too far when he shot Parker again because the unarmed robber by then was unconscious from the head wound and not moving on the floor.
Ersland's attorneys said he was a hero who defended two female co-workers and himself.
The insurance company filed its own lawsuit last year, asking a judge to rule its policy with Reliable Discount Pharmacy did not cover Ersland's actions.
The judge, though, ruled against Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Co.
Jennings' attorney, Kwame Mumina, told The Oklahoman after the hearing, “I think it was a fair settlement for everybody.”
He also said, “It's a difficult situation I think for everybody. And, unfortunately, the only way to resolve some of these things is through the court system. And that avenue was undertaken, not for any type of retribution or anything like that but simply because the justice system allows it.”
Part of the money from the settlement would have gone to Parker's father but instead is going to DHS because the father owes thousands of dollars in back child support. DHS is the state agency that works to collect past-due child support from delinquent parents.