CTEQI Weekly Wrap-Up: 3/21–3/25

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, the Supreme Court gets slammed for strengthening qualified immunity to “almost absurd levels”; a state lawmaker addresses the humanitarian crisis in New York’s prison system; a good cop in Maryland sues his racist supervisors; and more! 


The Washington Post: Two Alarming Trajectories at the Supreme Court

“Perversely, because the court believes that being bound by its own precedents is a core part of its legitimacy, justices’ stubborn refusal to provide relief to people who were clearly harmed by federal law enforcement has become, in itself, the biggest barrier to providing relief in new cases in which people were harmed by federal agents. (As for state and local officials, the Supreme Court has concurrently shielded them by strengthening the doctrine of qualified immunity to almost absurd levels.)”

Read more here.


Julia Salazar, chair of the New York State Senate’s Standing Committee on Crime Victims, Crime and Corrections, blasted qualified immunity for shielding sexually abusive prison guards from accountability. Senator Salazar is a co-sponsor of S 1991, New York’s QI-busting bill. “Passing S 1991 and ending qualified immunity will prevent sexual predators in positions of power from continuing to get away with their abuse, she stated.

Read more here. (CW: sexual assault)

The Legal Aid Society filed a class-action lawsuit this week on behalf of more than 30,000 people, accusing the NYPD of unconstitutionally collecting DNA samples from crime suspects. “If the NYPD wanted to search someone’s cell phone, if they wanted to search your home, they would have to get a warrant or court order to do so…here, they’re getting this ability to effectively search your genetic material perpetually without any authorization,” said Phil Desgranges, supervising attorney for Legal Aid.  

Read more here.


“You’re basically thrown out of court before you can fully discover the facts”: Vermont Public Radio examines the brutal cost of aggressive policing in the Green Mountain State, and how qualified immunity keeps blocking justice as legislators push to end the unconstitutional rule. 

Read more here.


Good cop Mark Miles, who is Black, has sued his white supervisors in the Maryland-National Capital Park Police Department after facing retaliation for exposing their discrimination. Officer Miles called out the rogue cops for making unsettling comments in a text chain that “included racial and other offensive ‘jokes,’ condoning ‘civil war’ or ‘race war’ and extremist militia groups, and overt threats of violence against African American citizens.”

Read more here.


Reuters: Not Just Cops: Judge Highlights How Unqualified Immunity Shields Prosecutors

“The 2nd Circuit case further demonstrates the need for the Supreme Court to rectify its immunities case law in order to deter officials who are negligent, or simply corrupt.”

Read more here.

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