SUMMARY JUDGMENT GRANTED TO NEW YORK CITY POLICE DEPT IN LAWSUIT FOR EXCESSIVE FORCE

Court: Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, New York

Case: Estate of Estevez v. The City of New York

Date: Oct. 25, 2011

From: New York attorney Gary E. Rosenberg (personal injury and accident attorney and lawyer; serving Bronx and Queens; Queens injury attorney)

Comment: A strange case. The New York City Police Dept. Is sued for using "excessive force" in arresting and handcuffing a mentally disturbed person who was fighting them. This lawsuit is brought by the injured person/s estate -- which means he's dead. This case is dismissed on the NYPD's (defense) motion for summary judgment.

The decision doesn't indicate if the accident victim died at the hands of the police, or if he was alive when the case was started and died while it was pending. Another example of an appeals court decision not giving us information that would be helpful to know.

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RELATED POSTS:

POLICE NEGLIGENT IN GETTING SEARCH WARRANT FOR DRUGS AND KICKING IN DOOR OF APARTMENT OF INNOCENT SLEEPING MOTHER AND CHILDREN (Posted by Brooklyn injury attorney Gary E. Rosenberg on Sep 21, 2011)

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Order, Supreme Court, Bronx County (Mark Friedlander, J.), entered July 29, 2009, which granted defendants' motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint, and order, same court and Justice, entered on or about March 15, 2010, which denied plaintiff's motion to renew, unanimously affirmed, without costs.

There is no evidence in the record that defendant police officers, responding to a call to assist "an emotionally disturbed person," used excessive force in restraining and handcuffing the decedent, whom they found extremely agitated and holding a large piece of broken ceramic vase in his hand (see Koeiman v. City of New York, 36 A.D.3d 451, 829 N.Y.S.2d 24 [2007], lv. denied 8 N.Y.3d 814, 838 N.Y.S.2d 840, 870 N.E.2d 160 [2007]). The record demonstrates that the officers believed that the decedent intended to injure himself, that the decedent resisted the officers' efforts to restrain him, fracturing the wrist of one and biting the other, and that the officers used the amount of force they reasonably believed was necessary to restrain and handcuff the decedent.

We have considered plaintiff's other arguments and find them unavailing.

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