Simi Valley reaches $21M settlement with man cleared in killing of girlfriend, her son

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (KABC) -- The city of Simi Valley reached a $21 million settlement with a man who spent nearly 40 years in prison in the killing of his girlfriend and her 4-year-old son.

Craig Coley was released in 2017 after he was pardoned by then-Gov. Jerry Brown, who said DNA evidence and re-investigation proved his innocence.

Coley spent 39 years in prison after being wrongly convicted of killing his girlfriend and her son in 1978.

In a statement, Simi Valley's city manager said no amount of money can make up for what happened to Coley -- but settling this case is "the right thing to do for him."

Last year the state approved a separate, nearly $2 million payment for Coley, now 71.

Coley's lawyer says the money offers some closure, though no amount can compensate him for the life he missed while imprisoned.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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