LUCKY BAG LITIGATION
In Schwartz v. City of New York, the Firm challenged the highly controversial NYPD policy known as "Operation Lucky Bag," in which officers plant purses and other property in City subways and parks and arrest whoever picks it up, even if that person is a good samaritan.
After defeating the City's summary judgment motion, the City appealed the district court's decision denying qualified immunity to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. After argument, the Circuit issued a Summary Order, holding that the officers had failed to establish even arguable probable cause for plaintiff's arrest. While the appeal was pending, the Firm successfully opposed the City's motion to stay Monell discovery, and compelled the production of a broad range of policy disclosures.
Following these wins, the Firm obtained a favorable settlement for the plaintiff.
The District Court's Lucky Bag Orders
THE HURRICANE SANDY LOOTING CASES
The Firm has successfully represented a number of young minority men arrested for looting a Key Food supermarket in Coney Island, Brooklyn, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
In one of the cases, Franks v. City of New York, the Firm persuaded the District Court to order production of officer photographs over the City's vigorous opposition. The City's motion for reconsideration was also denied.
All of the Hurricane Sandy cases were settled before depositions.
JURY AWARDS PUNITIVE DAMAGES IN TRIAL AGAINST PORT AUTHORITY
In early 2014, the Firm obtained a punitive damages award for client Tyson Lucas in his false arrest trial against the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in the Southern District of New York.
The Port Authority had refused to discuss settlement during the case.
In this video, Mr. Lucas is seen being pushed by a Port Authority police officer. It was one of the coldest nights of the year and Mr. Lucas had entered the bus terminal to warm up after collecting cans in the frigid temperatures for hours. The jury found that Mr. Lucas was doing nothing illegal when this shove took place and that the officer acted with wanton disregard for Mr. Lucas' federally protected civil rights.
It was hugely gratifying for the Firm to be able to help Mr. Lucas bring this officer to justice. We were humbled and honored to work on his case.