Justin Amash and Ayanna Pressley have introduced bipartisan legislation that would end qualified immunity. And today, their bill received an enormous outpouring of support from 1,400 current and former pro athletes, coaches, and managers from across the NFL, NBA, and MLB.
The letter remarks on several cases where qualified immunity has been used to excuse egregious allegations of misconduct:
The 8th Circuit applied it to an officer who wrapped a woman in a bear hug, slammed her to the ground, and broke her collarbone as she walked away from him. The 9th Circuit applied the doctrine to two officers who allegedly stole $225,000 while executing a search warrant. The Eleventh Circuit applied the doctrine to protect an officer who unintentionally shot a ten-year old while firing at the family dog (who, much like the child, posed no threat).Excerpt from Players Coalition petition in support of the Ending Qualified Immunity Act (case links added)
The enormous list of names behind the petition adds to a growing chorus of voices calling for the life-threatening doctrine of qualified immunity to be abolished. You can read more about these cases, as well as the full text of the Players Coalition petition, below.