NYC Makes It Easier To Sue Police For Misconduct

CBS New York reports:

The New York City Council has voted to end qualified immunity for police officers. The decades-old protection has prevented officers from being sued or liable for misconduct. New York is now the first city in the country to end qualified immunity.

Critics argued scrapping the protection will make officers less aggressive in fighting crime, if they have to worry about lawsuits. City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, however, said it “has been used to deny justice to victims of police abuse for decades.”

Law & Crime reports:

The measure, which passed by a vote of 37-11, was part of a series of law enforcement reforms aimed at increasing transparency between the public and the NYPD.

City lawmakers said the rule would “ensure that officers who violate Constitutional rights in the course of a search and seizure or by the use of excessive force are not entitled to qualified immunity,” according to WPIX-TV.

Qualified immunity is a legal doctrine created by the Supreme Court that has steadily developed to prevent citizens from holding government actors accountable for constitutional violations enshrined in the Civil Rights Act.