Naily Nida, the widow of Michael Nida, who was allegedly shot in the back by Downey, California police officer Steven Dean Gilley, settled a wrongful death lawsuit May 9, 2013 for $4.5 million.

On October 22, 2011, Michael Nida and his wife were stopped at a gas station in Downey. While Naily pumped the gas, Michael went to a shop across the street. Upon leaving the shop, Michael was allegedly accosted by officer Blanca Jasmin Reyes, who was searching for two robbery suspects. Despite the fact that the suspects were wearing dark hooded sweatshirts and Michael was wearing a collared polo shirt with yellow and blue stripes, Reyes ordered him to sit on the curb.

Michael Nida then made a fatal mistake. He had done nothing wrong, but he ran.

During the chase, officer Steven Dean Gilley allegedly shot Michael Nida in the back, with no warning, while his wife looked on. He died shortly thereafter.

Naily Nida sued the City of Downey and officers Gilley, Reyes and Michael Ruiz Powell. She alleged a variety of claims relating to the wrongful death of her husband, including unreasonable search and seizure, battery and civil rights violations. She sought compensatory damages, punitive damages and attorney’s fees.

On May 9, 2013, the parties entered into a settlement. The City of Downey agreed to pay Naily Nida $4.5 million.

Case: Nida v. City of Downey, et al., United States District Court for the Central District of California, Case No. 2:12-cv-01382-SJO-JEM (May 9, 2013).

Originally published in Criminal Legal News on December 20, 2017.

About Christopher Zoukis, MBA

Christopher Zoukis, MBA, is the Managing Director of the Zoukis Consulting Group, a federal prison consultancy that assists attorneys, federal criminal defendants, and federal prisoners with prison preparation, in-prison matters, and reentry. His books include Directory of Federal Prisons (Middle Street Publishing, 2020), Federal Prison Handbook (Middle Street Publishing, 2017), Prison Education Guide (PLN Publishing, 2016), and College for Convicts: The Case for Higher Education in American Prisons (McFarland & Company, 2014).