Updated: March 12, 2021 04:41 PM
Created: March 12, 2021 03:17 PM
A federal judge has ruled that a lawsuit brought forward by the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota on behalf of injured protesters can move forward.
According to a release from ACLU-MN, the class action lawsuit submitted by ACLU-MN and Fish & Richardson P.C. in July on behalf of injured protesters can move forward in the courts.
"... the Court finds that the Amended Complaint plausibly alleges that an unofficial custom regarding the use of unconstitutional force against peaceful protesters existed at the time of the George Floyd protests, and that the custom was either tacitly authorized by municipal policymakers or policymakers were deliberately indifferent to it," wrote U.S. District Judge Susan Richard Nelson.
The lawsuit alleges that the Minneapolis Police Department used unnecessary and excessive force to suppress a protected First Amendment protest. It also alleges that peaceful protesters were unnecessarily tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed and shot with hard foam bullets and flashbangs, sometimes without given warnings or dispersal orders.
"Police are supposed to protect and serve, not fire tear gas and hard foam bullets at people while they are peacefully protesting," said ACLU-MN staff attorney Isabella Nascimento. "It is particularly outrageous that people out protesting police violence and the murder of George Floyd by MPD were met by more police violence at the hands of MPD. We're pleased the judge allowed our case to move forward, giving us the opportunity to hold police accountable for their pattern of using indiscriminate, excessive force intended to deter people from engaging in First Amendment activity."
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