CONCORD, NH — On September 21, 2016, the First Circuit affirmed summary judgment for the municipal and individual police defendants on the basis of qualified immunity and a lack of final municipal poicymaking authority under Monell. Caroline Leonard and Charlie Bauer represented the municipal and individual police defendants.
This case arose from the plaintiff’s arrest for allegedly raping a mentally handicapped woman living in the same household. Plaintiff sued under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for false arrest and municipal liability under Monell.
The First Circuit held that any facts misstated in the arrest warrant were immaterial under clearly established law to support a Fourth Amendment claim, and any facts omitted from the arrest warrant were not required to be included under clearly established law. The First Circuit also held that the officers were not required to undertake additional investigation by clearly established law. The First Circuit found that the district court had properly concluded that the Town could not be held liable because the undisputed facts demonstrated that the instruction for this arrest came from the Rockingham County Attorney’s Office, not the Chief of Police.
The First Circuit’s opinion may be found here: Cullen v. Town of Fremont et al., No. 16-1004, 1st Cir. Sept. 21, 2016.
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