In July of this year the plaintiffs in Chua v. City of Los Angeles, based on LAPD misconduct during 2014 protests concerning Michael Brown, filed a motion for certification as a class action suit. The City of Los Angeles did not oppose the motion. But, of course, even if the parties to a suit agree, these things are still up to the Judge. A hearing on the motion was held on November 7, and Judge Kronstadt stated his “tentative views that [he] is inclined to grant in part Plaintiffs’ Motion for Class Certification. However, evidently he still had some questions about his decision, because he instructed the plaintiffs to supplement their motion for class certification with some additional briefs, which were due and filed last Monday, the 14th of November. They are linked to directly below, and you can find some quotations and uninformed discussion after the break.
Interestingly, those minutes also note that the City isn’t presently interested in settling matters:
The Court confers with counsel regarding settlement. Plaintiffs are open to participating in a settlement conference now while defense counsel believes it is premature at this time.
Tonight two new filings in this case hit PACER. First and most interesting there is this Joint Discovery Plan. It has statements of the case from both the plaintiffs and the defendant:
This case involves the detention and arrests of individuals in November, 2014 during several days of protests related to the events in Ferguson, Missouri and the death of Michael Brown. The case is filed as a class action based on two incidents: one occurring at Beverly and Alvarado in which the sub-class was subject to detention, warrantless search and interrogation before being released by Defendants. The second incident involves a mass arrest at 6th and Hope in which Plaintiffs contend that they were not given adequate dispersal notice before being surrounded by the LAPD and arrested. The group at 6 th & Hope also contend that they were held in jail for approximately a day when they should have been cited and released pursuant to California Penal Code § 853.6. Both groups also allege that their privacy rights were violated by the collection of personal information and the storage and dissemination of that information by the LAPD and to other law enforcement entities.
Last month the plaintiffs in Chua v. City of Los Angeles filed a ton of material asking for the case to be certified as a class action. Today the defendant, the City of Los Angeles, filed a notice of non-opposition to that request. They’re doing it for the most altruistic reasons ever:
…in order to conserve party and Court resources, Defendants hereby state that they do not oppose Plaintiffs’ Motion for Class Certification … at this time.
And what have they given up through their kind-hearted and selfless concern for the resources of the court? Well, pretty much nothing:
Since discovery has not yet commenced, Defendants reserve the right to seek decertification of the classes certified (in whole or in part) should discovery reveal that certification is not appropriate.
Yesterday night the Times reported that a suit was filed in federal court on January 14, 2016, on behalf of people, including NLG-LA lawyers there to observe, whose rights were violated by the LAPD in November 2014 during a protest against a Missouri grand jury’s failure to indict Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown. For whatever reason, newspaper articles like this never link to the court filings, which I, and maybe even you, find fascinating. On the face of it this case has nothing to do with BIDs, although it’s conceivable that a connection will develop,1 but I’m going to collect filings here anyway since I’m going to read them myself, so I might as well distribute them. I don’t plan to write much on them, but who knows? I set up a page to display them. It’s also reachable through the menu structure above. Right now the initial complaint is there and is well worth your time. There are some selections after the break: Continue reading Documents Available as City of L.A., Charlie Beck Sued by Michael Brown Protesters, National Lawyers Guild, over November 2014 Rights Violations→