My colleagues Ben Zipursky and Bennett Capers, together with John Goldberg, have an important op-ed in today’s Washington Post:
“How to reform police liability without involving McConnell or Trump”
“Police officers enjoy almost complete immunity from civil suits in federal court. They can shoot someone, taser someone, choke someone, or press their knee into someone’s neck until they can’t breathe. They can brutalize peaceful protesters. And yet, in large part because of the court-made rule of qualified immunity, officers rarely face liability.
“The calls for ending qualified immunity have not gone unheard. The House of Representatives passed a bill that would eliminate it and enable victims to obtain remedies for violations of their civil rights. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and the Senate have balked at this change, as has President Trump. Likewise, the Supreme Court recently declined to revisit the subject.
“The good news is that changing federal law is not the only way to erase the grave accountability deficit for unlawful police violence. There’s an alternative hiding in plain sight: state law.”
See the rest here.