A California woman who was paid nearly $5 million in a settlement after her son was fatally shot by police officers was arrested for using the money to purchase guns for her other son and gang members.
Christina Lopez, 42, of Madera, was one of 14 people arrested in a months-long investigation into a gang whose members were allegedly involved in a fatal shooting in July, according to the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office.
Lopez received $4.9 million from the city in April for the death of her 16-year-old son, Isiah Murrietta-Golding, who was shot and killed as he ran away from officers attempting to detain or arrest him in 2017. The settlement was one of the largest in the city’s history.
Fresno County District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp said that Lopez used funds from the settlement to purchase weapons for her 14-year old son to distribute to his gang.
“She has continued now to take the money from her settlement that she received from the city of Fresno to buy a home where she lives in addition to spending thousands of dollars on guns that she has in turn given to her 14-year-old son,” she said, according to ABC 30.
“Clearly, this family has been seasoned in this type of behavior,” Smittcamp added.
Lopez’s attorney Ralph Torres claims that she is innocent and that all of the money she received from the settlement can be accounted for, the outlet reported. He told the station that she had moved out of the area to protect her kids from any further gun violence.
“We have to see what they have and what type of concrete, physical evidence that we can look at so that would connect her,” he said.
Lopez faces 22 counts of gun trafficking charges including conspiracy to provide firearms to a minor for the benefit of a street gang, child endangerment and conspiracy to provide a firearm to a gang member, police said.
Lopez remains in jail and is expected to make her first court appearance on Tuesday, ABC 30 reported.
With Post wires