U.S. 5th Circuit holds fact question exists on qualified immunity between whether officer stepped in front of car to prevent escape, or was already in front of car and shot to defend himself

  Vann v. City of Southaven, 16-60561 (5th Cir. November 22, 2017). The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit reversed the granting of summary judgment for the City and its officer in this police shooting and death case. … Continue reading

U.S. 5th Circuit holds henceforth, a clearly established constitutional right exists to video tape police and their facilities

Turner v. Driver, No. 16-10312 (5th Cir., February 27, 2017) This is a §1983 case where the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part an order dismissing three officers from a suit … Continue reading


Deputies entitled to qualified immunity, even though one testified his actions may be unconstitutional

Pratt v. Harris County 15-20080 (5th Circuit- May 3rd 2016) This is a §1983 excessive force case where the trial court granted the officer’s qualified immunity motions. The 5th Circuit affirmed. Pratt was involved in a minor traffic accident.  Upon … Continue reading


Police officer hired by private university established entitlement to official immunity

William Marsh Rice University and Gary Spears v. Rasheed Rafaey 14-13-00235-CV (Tex. App.- Houston [14th Dist.], May 17th 2016) A man arrested by a private-university peace officer sued the officer and the university asserting various tort claims, but the 14th … Continue reading

City ordinance requiring hotels to provide certain data to law enforcement equates to unconstitutional search and is facially invalid says U.S. Supreme Court

Los Angeles v. Patel 13-1175 (U.S. June 22, 2015) In this case the U.S. Supreme Court analyzed the standards for making facial challenges to particular city ordinances. After analyzing the specific ordinance, the Court held the City’s ordinance unconstitutional. The … Continue reading

U.S. Supreme Court holds officers entitled to qualified immunity after shooting mentally ill individual holding a knife

CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, ET AL. v. SHEEHAN No. 13–1412  (U.S. May 18, 2015) This is a §1983 and ADA case where the U.S. Supreme Court held officers who shot a mentally ill individual who attacked them with … Continue reading

Officer entitled to immunity for warrantless entry while in hot pursuit of misdemeanor suspect says U.S. Supreme Court.

Stanton v. Sims, No. 12-1217, __ U.S. __ (November 4, 2013). In this U.S. Supreme Court case, the Court held an officer was entitled to qualified immunity after entering into a side-yard while in hot pursuit of a misdemeanor suspect. … Continue reading

Mother’s claims for release of sexual orientation information of daughter dismissed.

Wyatt v. Fletcher No. 11-41359 (5th Cir. May 31, 2013). This is essentially a privacy claim for information known to the entity and released to the parent.  For cities which have programs, community centers, and other situations where information about … Continue reading