Police, The Fourth Amendment, Qualified Immunity

Court rules no taser for minor crime plus mere non-compliance with police orders

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Case: DOPORTO v. KIM (D.N.M. 11-23-2011)

Thus, when an officer’s violation of the Fourth Amendment is particularly clear from [Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386 (1989) (seminal Supreme Court case on excessive force law] itself, the Tenth Circuit does not require a second decision with greater specificity to clearly establish the law. That is the case here. The limited admissible evidence presented on summary judgment is that Defendants Baker and Honigmann deployed their taser against a man who at that time was offering no resistance and posed no threat. It cannot be disputed that on February 22, 2008, it was clearly established that use of a taser against a person suspected of a relatively minor crime, who posed no threat to officer or others, and who was following directives issued by police, constitutes excessive force. Accordingly, the Defendants’ motion for summary judgment on the excessive force claims on the grounds of qualified immunity will be denied.

Written by Burgers Allday

December 4, 2011 at 4:28 am

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