Thursday, February 22

Michigan State to Pay $15 Million to Families of 3 Shooting Victims

Michigan State University has reached a $15 million settlement with the families of three students who were killed in a shooting on campus in February.

Dan Kelly, a university trustee, announced the settlement on Friday during a public board meeting, according to Emily Gerkin Guerrant, a spokeswoman.

“While no amount of compensation can ever replace the loss of a life, we do hope this brings some closure, support and relief to these impacted families,” Mr. Kelly said in a statement.

“The university gives its deepest condolences to each of the three families,” he said, adding that it remained committed to ensuring that the memories of their children would not be forgotten in the school community.

Mr. Kelly also said that the “university remains committed to enhancing safety on campus and providing mental health support to our community as we continue to heal.”

David Femminineo, a lawyer for one of the families, said his clients would receive $5 million. They intend to use the funds to honor their loved one and to help other students, he said.

On Feb. 13, a gunman opened fire shortly before 8:30 p.m. at Berkey Hall, home to the university’s College of Social Science, and killed two students there, the authorities said. Then, the gunman, later identified as Anthony McRae, 43, moved to the Michigan State student union, a popular place for students to eat and study, where he killed a third student. The two buildings, which are minutes apart on Grand River Avenue, were unlocked and open to the public.

Students and members of the faculty and staff sheltered in place, many in dormitories and other campus buildings, as hundreds of police officers searched for the gunman. After a three-hour manhunt, the university police said that Mr. McRae had been found off campus around 11:30 p.m. that night, and that he had died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The authorities identified the three victims as Arielle Diamond Anderson, a sophomore from Harper Woods, Mich.; Brian Fraser, a sophomore from Grosse Pointe, Mich.; and Alexandria Verner, a junior from Clawson, Mich. Five other students were wounded in the attack.

Ven Johnson, a lawyer for the Anderson and Fraser families, did not immediately respond to requests for comment about the settlement on Sunday.

Mr. Femminineo, who is representing the Verner family, said in a statement on Sunday that “this case was never about blaming Michigan State University for the tragic events” on Feb. 13.

“Instead, the Verner family has sought answers as to how this could be prevented in the future,” Mr. Femminineo said.

“With this resolution,” he added, “the Verner family will be able to begin to heal and also promote the legacy of Alex so that Alex can act as an example for future students moving forward so they can attempt to mirror the example that Alex set in her short but impactful life.”

During a news conference in Mr. Femminineo’s office on Friday, Ms. Verner’s parents said that they planned to use their share of the settlement to honor their daughter through initiatives such as a student scholarship.