Legal Aid Society


NYCLU and LAS Sue Mayor, NYPD for Police Brutality During Protests

Today The Legal Aid Society and the New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against Mayor Bill de Blasio, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, Chief of Department Terence Monahan, the City of New York, and several individual police officers for their roles in the indiscriminate brutalizing of peaceful protestors during the protests following the police killing of George Floyd, reports Gothamist.

The suit addresses the first month of protests between May 28 and June 28, where swarming officers used batons, pepper spray, and other aggressive techniques to retaliate against New Yorkers for showing their support of Black lives and demanding an end to police violence. Such uses of excessive force against these demonstrators violated their First and Fourth Amendment rights.

The Lawsuit highlights the widespread and widely-publicized instances of indiscriminate force by police officers during the protests in late May and June following the police killing of George Floyd, and claims the mayor and city instituted a de facto policy allowing individual officers to violently target protesters by repeatedly approving forceful deployments and refusing discipline or repercussions for blatant officer misconduct.

“This is not the story of bad apples. This was a deliberately violent response to these protests. It was a response that was endorsed and encouraged by the mayor and police commissioner,” said Corey Stoughton, Attorney-in-Charge of the Special Litigation Unit with the Criminal Defense Practice at The Legal Aid Society.