$5 Million Settlement Reached in Schoolyard Slayings
2007 triple-murder of college-bound youth shocked city, nation
The Newark Public School district and the state of New Jersey Tuesday agreed to a $5 million settlement with the families of three college-bound friends murdered in a schoolyard in 2007, the Associated Press reported.
A civil trial involving the families of Dashon Harvey, Iofemi Hightower and Terrance Aeriel had been underway for several weeks when the settlement was reached yesterday. Six defendants involved in the murders -- as well as the assault of a fourth victim, who survived -- have already been convicted or pleaded guilty.
As a condition of the settlement, neither the state nor the school system have admitted liability.
On Aug. 4, 2007, the victims were hanging out at the Mt. Prospect School schoolyard when five men and a youth entered and robbed them, then murdered three of them execution-style. At least some of the perpetrators were believed to be tied to MS-13, a Latin American street gang.