DENVER – The first trial in the nation challenging police officers’ illegal use of force against individuals protesting the murder of George Floyd is set to begin in federal district court in Denver, Colorado, on Monday, March 7, at 9:00 a.m. MT.
During the summer of 2020, plaintiffs were exercising their First Amendment rights by participating in protests when they were met with Denver police officers’ violent crowd control tactics which included the indiscriminate use of so-called less lethal weapons such as PepperBall guns, tear gas, 40mm launchers, Stinger and flash-bang grenades — all of which inflicted unwarranted and painful injuries. The municipal claims against the City and County of Denver challenge the policies, practices, and widespread customs that were the moving force behind the constitutional violations.
Plaintiffs allege that Denver failed to train its officers in the constitutional responses to peaceful demonstrations, despite history of such violations in the past and the clear need for such training, and that Denver sanctioned and ratified the misconduct of its officers by failing to discipline them for their excessive use of force. Plaintiffs are asking a jury to hold the City of Denver and its police department accountable for their policies and practices that caused widespread violations of the protesters’ constitutional rights.
The trial is scheduled to last three weeks and is brought on behalf of twelve individual plaintiffs against the City and County of Denver. In June and July 2020, two cases were brought on behalf of several individuals who were injured by police during the protests. Seven plaintiffs are represented by ACLU of Colorado and Arnold & Porter and five plaintiffs are represented by Loevy & Loevy. The two cases were consolidated in August 2020.
Monday, March 7, 2022, at 9:00 a.m. MT
Continuing for fifteen days, through March 25, 2022
Courtroom A-902, Ninth Floor
Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse
901 19th Street, Denver, Colorado 80294
ACLU of Colorado, Arnold & Porter Complaint:
Loevy & Loevy Complaint: https://www.aclu-co.org/sites/default/files/219.3ac.pdf