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Marshall Dennehey Attorneys Achieved a Precedential Decision Reversing the Federal District Court’s Denial of Qualified Immunity for Their Police Officer Clients

The defense obtained a unanimous, precedential decision in the Third Circuit reversing a federal district court’s denial of qualified immunity for our police officer clients. The plaintiff was a passenger in a car struck by a bullet fired by one of several officers who engaged the vehicle as it sped into a populated area on the main drag through Pittsburgh’s south side. The officers, working secondary duty as security guards at bars, opened fire after the vehicle ran a red light, led cruisers on a five-mile chase, failed to obey orders to stop, swerved in and out of the right lane, and crashed off cars parked along the street. The defense presented oral argument, and the Third Circuit agreed that, in light of the threat posed by the vehicle, the officers’ conduct in shooting was objectively reasonable under the Fourth Amendment. The court reversed the denial of qualified immunity and remanded with instructions to enter summary judgment in the officers’ favor.

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