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View Diary: Stop-and-frisk on trial (175 comments)

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  •  Will any successful outcome stick on Appeal (4+ / 0-)

    Unless a decision in Floyd is based on the NY Constitution, rather than the Federal constitution, or a NY civil rights statute, I will be amazed if any successful outcome survives appeal unless the make-up of the US Supreme Court changes.

    In The New Jim Crow - Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, Michelle Alexander describes in depth how the US Supreme Court's conservative majority has systematically cut-off system, as opposed to individual vindication of constitutional rights in the criminal justice area.

    There is a civil rights statute which addresses this conduct, but after a number of successful challenges to racial profiling in 1990's, the Supreme Court in Lyons v. Los Angelos, ruled more or less that only the attorney general of the United States had the standing to bring law suits addressed to future conduct and that individuals could only seek damages. (That's how Holder sues Sheriff Joe and is why it is so important that the Dems control the US AG position).

    Now Lyons was based on the premise that an individual could not make out a credible case that he would personally be subject to the same conduct in the future. Floyd obviously is attempting to distinguish Lyons and make out a credible case that its Plaintiffs will be subject to similar conduct in the future. But even if they are successful in that, I doubt that the US Supreme Court would permit class relief that would bind the City of New York against other defendants.

    I wish them good luck, but I am not optimistic.

    •  I am not a lawyer - and am hoping that (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson, Yasuragi, a2nite, AoT

      these issues will be addressed by Shanikka, Armando - or other Kossaks who are.

      If the judge finds that the city has systematically violated the constitutional rights of citizens, using a racially discriminatory policy - I would assume the City has a right to appeal to a higher Federal court.

      In reference to Lyons there is info here, which was part of Judge Scheindlin's ruling inDaniels:

      The defendants initially moved to dismiss the case, citing a 1983 Supreme Court decision, City of Los Angeles v. Lyons, which held that plaintiffs lack standing to sue for equitable relief unless they allege that they face a realistic threat of future injury from the policy under challenge. The court denied the motion to dismiss.

      In a subsequent ruling, the court also refused to dismiss the plaintiffs’ equal protection clause claim and held that the plaintiffs had properly set forth an express racial classification by asserting that the SCU had a “policy, practice and/or custom of stopping and frisking [individuals] based solely on [their] race and/or national origin.”

      While the case was in progress, the NYPD disbanded the SCU, a decision that was likely influenced by large anti-police brutality mobilizations after the Diallo killing and CCR’s lawsuit. In September 2003, after CCR had completed the depositions of top NYPD officials and had reviewed tens of thousands of pages of discovery, the City agreed to settle the case.

      The settlement agreement, which was approved by Judge Scheindlin on December 12, 2003, requires the NYPD to maintain a written anti-racial profiling policy that complies with the U.S. and New York State Constitutions and is binding on all NYPD officers. In addition, it requires that the NYPD audit officers who engage in stop-and-frisks, and their supervisors, to determine whether and to what extent the stop-and-frisks are based on reasonable suspicion and whether and to what extent the stop-and-frisks are being documented. The results of these audits were to be provided to CCR on a quarterly basis. The NYPD was also required to engage in public education efforts, including joint public meetings with class members and representatives on its racial profiling policy, provide workshops at approximately 50 city high schools on the legal rights of those subjected to stop-and-frisks and develop handouts on these issues for distribution at these and other events. Judge Scheindlin maintained oversight over the settlement through 2007.

      After significant non-compliance with the consent decree and after new information released publicly by the City showed a remarkable increase in stop-and-frisks over the past several years, CCR decided to file a new class-action lawsuit, Floyd, et al. v. The City of New York, et al.

      Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Mar 24, 2013 at 12:29:45 PM PDT

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