CTEQI Weekly Wrap-Up: 1/3–1/7

Welcome to the Campaign to End Qualified Immunity’s weekly wrap-up for 1/3–1/7! Here, we highlight the latest updates and notable news as we continue our state-focused fight to abolish the unjust rule. 

This week, a policing veteran explains how qualified immunity harms good cops; rogue officers face accountability in Maryland; Colorado offers a valuable lesson in protecting public safety; and more! 


USA Today: I’ve Seen Enough Police Abuse in My Career to Know Qualified Immunity Harms Good Cops

Dave Myers: “As a 35-year veteran of a major law enforcement agency, I’ve seen enough cases of police misconduct to know that ending or modifying qualified immunity will increase government accountability, encourage better official conduct and give victims of police abuse their day in civil court.”

Read more here.


A recent lawsuit filed against a juvenile detention center alleges disturbing abuse at the hands of rogue caretakers, including physical assault, invasive strip-searches, and restraining children with disabilities. The suit also targets “state officials who reportedly ignored the abuse.”

Read more here.


“Oregon [is] among states not in compliance with United Nations Nelson Mandela Rules on the treatment of prisoners, but a new legal challenge hopes to change that. Attorneys with Oregon Justice Resource Center filed a suit requesting that the state’s court of appeals curtail solitary confinement from an excessively cruel 36 days to 15. 

Read more here.

Police reform bill HB 2204 “is a good start…but it doesn’t go far enough,” says the ACLU of Oregon, because it doesn’t strike down qualified immunity. “Police officers and…government officials…should be held accountable to the people they serve.” 

Read more here.


Journalist Melissa Santos spent a year and a half investigating police misconduct in Washington State with the help of Brady’s List, a resource for prosecutors to keep tabs on rogue cops. Thanks to Santos’ work, “some county prosecutors would fix gaps in their systems for tracking officers’ misbehavior — or even update their Brady lists to include officers who hadn’t been flagged before.” 

Read more here.


Michael A. Owen Jr., who has a “consistent and well-known history of police brutality”—including fatally shooting a man in handcuffs—could finally face accountability, thanks to a new lawsuit filed against him and other rogue cops in Prince George’s County, Maryland. 

Read more here.


In response to George Floyd’s murder in the spring of 2020, Colorado took action to protect its citizens from rogue cops by ending qualified immunity (QI). 

The Centennial State has set the gold standard for public safety, and it remains the model for the growing number of states working to establish their own systems of police accountability. 

“I’m often asked how we did it,” said Leslie Herod, the key lawmaker responsible for passing this bold policy. Her answer: “The pressure coming directly from the people of Colorado demanding change was immense, and it was bipartisan and reached across racial demographics.”

Not surprisingly, repealing the harmful rule brought immediate positive changes to Colorado policing.   

After ending qualified immunity, “we’ve actually had a couple of good classes come through the academies,” admitted Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle. “And we picked up some good folks and really diverse groups, you know, lots of women, lots of people of color, people that look like our community.”

One thing that hasn’t picked up since Colorado abolished QI: a rash of “frivolous” lawsuits against police officers. “In fact,” noted civil rights attorney Mari Newman, “the sky hasn’t fallen at all.” 

Read more here, here, and here.

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