Chief William McManus speaks with Diane Peppar in February 2016. Peppar is the mother of Antronie Scott who was fatally shot by Officer John Lee in 2016.
Police Chief William McManus speaks with Diane Peppar in February 2016. Peppar is the mother of Antronie Scott, who was fatally shot by Officer John Lee in 2016. Credit: Scott Ball / San Antonio Report

The City of San Antonio will pay a total of $450,000 to the family of Antronie Scott, an unarmed Black man who was shot and killed by a police officer in 2016.

The payments — $150,0000 each to Scott’s son, Antronie Scott Jr.; mother Diane Peppar; and Elena Scott, his widow — settle a consolidated wrongful death lawsuit the family filed against the city and Officer John Lee, who died in 2020.

City Council unanimously approved the settlement without discussion on Thursday.

“This settlement is in the best interest of the City and the community,” said City Attorney Andy Segovia Thursday, echoing the language of the memo attached to the agenda item. “By settling we avoid what could be a lengthy trial and appeal process and allow all parties to move forward.”

The case was slated for a jury trial last month. The settlement is funded through the city’s Self-Insured Liability Fund, which is used to pay claims against the city.

On Feb. 4, 2016, Lee was called to an apartment complex on the city’s North Side to arrest Scott, 36, for outstanding drug warrants.

Scott reportedly spun around in response to Lee’s demand to “let me see your hands,” and the officer has said he feared for his life because he thought Scott was holding a gun. Scott was actually reaching for a cell phone.

Lee was initially served notice that he faced termination for the shooting, but Police Chief William McManus later determined that Lee instead required “additional training” to return to the force. Then-Mayor Ivy Taylor agreed.

Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales declined to reopen the case after protests in 2020.

In February that year Lee, 41, was found dead in his home. The Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled his death accidental, the result of a heart condition and prescription drugs.

Iris Dimmick

Senior Reporter Iris Dimmick covers public policy pertaining to social issues, ranging from affordable housing and economic disparity to policing reform and workforce development. Contact her at iris@sareport.org