Qualified immunity: Supreme Court sides with police, overturns denial of immunity in two cases
The Supreme Court sided Monday with police in two cases in which plaintiffs claimed officers used excessive force, overturning separate lower court rulings that had allowed the officers to be sued for civil rights violations.
In two unsigned opinions, the court stressed police are entitled to be shielded from liability unless it is "clear to a reasonable officer" that their actions are unlawful. In both cases the court ruled that the officers were entitled to qualified immunity, the legal doctrine that protects police from liability for civil rights violations in many circumstances.
In one case, the Supreme Court overturned...