CTEQI Weekly Wrap-Up: 1/9–1/13

Welcome to the weekly update from the Campaign to End Qualified Immunity! Here, we give you a wrap-up of the latest developments and notable news as we continue our state-focused fight to abolish the unjust rule. 

This week, new data reveals that police killings reached a record high in 2022; Washington State launches a police use-of-force hotline; a Texas case pits the First Amendment against qualified immunity; and more! 


The Guardian: ‘It Never Stops’: Killings by US Police Reach Record High in 2022

“‘These are routine police encounters that escalate to a killing,’ said Samuel Sinyangwe, a data scientist and policy analyst who founded Mapping Police Violence and provided 2022 data to the Guardian. ‘The reduction in the conversation around police violence does not mean that this issue is going away. What’s clear is that it’s continuing to get worse, and that it’s deeply systemic.’”

Read more here.


In May 2020, NYPD officers brutalized homeless man Joseph T. for taking up more than one seat on a practically empty subway train. Although the cops originally claimed Joseph assaulted them, bodycam footage revealed the attack was unprovoked. Nearly three years later, the victim has settled with the City of New York for $135,000. 

Read more here.


Although its implementation has taken longer than expected, Washington has recently launched a civilian-led Office of Independent Investigations that keeps track of police use-of-force cases across the Evergreen State. “Several high-profile police killings nationally and locally…were a catalyst for creating the [Office],” notes KNKX. 

Read more here.

Public safety advocates in Washington are doubling down on their support of a state measure restricting police vehicle pursuits—a measure law enforcement agencies are trying to repeal. “We think the law threaded the needle in the way it was supposed to,” said the ACLU of Washington’s Enoka Herat, pointing out that “Deaths of bystanders were reduced by half when the law went into effect.”

Read more here.

A briefing is scheduled this week in Olympia on the investigation into the death of Timothy Green, who was fatally shot by police last August. “We know that people who have mental health issues are at a higher risk of being killed by police, and this is even more so for Black men like Tim,” said the victim’s family, demanding transparency. 

Read more here.


Former Chicago cop Joseph Cabrera has been sentenced to 24 months probation—but avoided  prison time—after pleading guilty to an off-duty 2021 shooting incident that injured a 22-year-old. Cabrera was allegedly intoxicated at the time of the incident and lied about being attacked. 

Read more here.


The Texas Tribune: Appeals Court to Decide If First Amendment Should Have Protected Laredo’s “Big Crazy Lady” from Arrest

“[Patricia Villareal’s] case pits the First Amendment against qualified immunity….Although it involves a freelance, untrained citizen journalist, the case has widespread implications for journalism in Texas and beyond.”

Read more here.

NAACP Legal Defense Fund: LDF Secures Victory in Qualified Immunity Excessive Force Case Involving Taser and Pepper-Spray Deployment

“‘Any reasonable officer should know that twice tasing and pepper-spraying an unarmed and unmoving person is excessive and unlawful,’ said LDF Assistant Counsel Ashok Chandran. ‘We commend the Court’s ruling recognizing as much, and are pleased that Mr. Getzen will have the opportunity to present his claims to a jury.’”

Read more here.

The Hill: What Oakland Has to Tell Us About Police Reform

“[Darwin] BondGraham notes that in his day job reporting local news, he sees the importance of trust between the police and the community when it comes to solving serious crime. Key information, he argues, often comes to an officer ‘who has the trust of the community. And these are often the officers who have most embraced some of the reform efforts.’”

Read more here.

WBUR: Lawsuit Over Fatal Newton Police Shooting Alleges City Services Endanger People with Mental Illness

“Although an inquest cleared police officers of criminal responsibility, Michael Conlon’s family said they hope the suit will lead to improvements in the way police respond to mental health emergencies….’They used him for target practice,’ [Conlon’s father] said. ‘It was error after error. And it cost Michael his life, us unbearable pain, and that’s why we’re suing.’”

Read more here. 

Boston.com: What We Know About the Fatal Police Shooting of N.H. Teen Mischa Fay

“Fay’s death comes amid a heightened focus on New Hampshire’s approach to mental health services. A 2021 Concord Monitor investigation found that more than 60% of the people shot and killed by New Hampshire police over the last decade had a mental illness.”

Read more here.

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