The city of Oakland announced today that it has agreed to pay a $32.7 million settlement to the families of the victims of the Ghost Ship fire. The civil lawsuit, which was on behalf of 32 of the 36 people who died in the 2016 warehouse fire, will allocate $23.5 million of the settlement to the victims’ families and $9.2 million to Sam Maxwell, a survivor of the fire who has to deal with lifelong injuries and medical expenses.
“The City continues to assert, as the agreement provides, that it is not liable for these tragic losses,” a news release from Oakland reads. “The City decided to settle this case because of the cost-benefit analysis. The City’s total insurance coverage is $22 million.”
This is separate from the criminal case against Ghost Ship master tenant Derick Almena, which resulted in a mistrial last year after the jury deadlocked on convicting him of 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter. Almena’s retrial is scheduled to begin in October. A jury already acquitted Max Harris, the organizer of the electronic party during which the fire happened.