November 18, 2016

Terry Sides successfully defended an Alabama city in a lawsuit in federal and state court in which the plaintiff claimed that her federal and state constitutional rights were violated by some of the city's police officers because of her arrest for domestic violence. The officers responded to a call from the plaintiff that she had been assaulted by her husband, but the officers' investigation on the scene (including interviews of eyewitnesses) revealed that it was the plaintiff, not her husband, who was the abuser. When the officers advised the plaintiff she was under arrest, she became combative, refused to follow the officers' commands, and physically resisted her arrest. The federal court ruled the plaintiff failed to state a federal claim for relief against the city, and the state court subsequently ruled that the plaintiff likewise had no claim against the city under Alabama law. The lawsuit was dismissed.

November 9, 2016

A federal court dismissed a lawsuit against an Alabama city in which the plaintiff claimed that the city had violated his constitutional rights by failing to properly train and supervise its police officers in making arrests, conducting searches and seizures, using force while making arrests, and providing medical care to arrestees. Two of the city’s police officers made a traffic stop of the plaintiff for his failure to obey a traffic signal and because the plaintiff’s vehicle matched that of a vehicle involved in a recent attempted armed robbery. During the traffic stop, the plaintiff, after repeated commands by the officers to show his hands, hid one hand from the officers and used his other hand to toss away bags of heroin and marijuana. To gain control of the plaintiff and stop his destruction of the evidence, one of the officers tased the plaintiff, following which the plaintiff physically resisted his arrest. After the officers effectuated the arrest, the plaintiff was transport...

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