Page 21 - November 2021
P. 21

 should proceed to a full Police Board hearing for termination. This is not a place of strength for officers, and the one member sides with COPA. But the plot does seem to thicken a little at this point.
While all of this is going on, there is that pesky federal judge who has the civil rights case. All the depositions, video evi- dence and written discovery are turned over and analyzed. The City, which we know cares about the officer — I mean, the money — files what’s called a motion for summary judgment. Summary judgment is usually granted after discovery, and the court will ask, if one were to view all of the evidence in favor of the plaintiff, do they still have a cognizable case? The answer was that they did not. The judge did a great job at applying the legal standard of use of force and held that there were no con- stitutional violations, meaning the officers did not act unrea- sonably under these facts. The court opined that when an offi- cer believes that a suspect’s actions place him or his partner, or those in the immediate vicinity, in imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm, the officer can reasonably exercise the use of deadly force. The judge found no violation of the law or Constitution and dismissed the federal law claims. Vindica- tion? We will see.
Now the Chicago Police Board is going to have to square this circle. A federal judge–you know, the one who was nominat- ed by the president of the United States and confirmed by the Senate–has ruled that the officers’ actions were reasonable. The City initially believed the officers’ actions were reasonable when arguing in federal court to dismiss to avoid a monetary jury verdict. Now, in an amazing bout of amnesia, COPA will ar- gue that the officers’ actions were unreasonable before the Po- lice Board. Why do we have this? Because COPA either doesn’t understand the law or ignores it. Stay tuned.

   19   20   21   22   23