LCW Attorneys Provide Amicus Support for Law Enforcement Agencies in U.S. Supreme Court Victory

Category: Briefing Room
Date: Aug 31, 2017 03:56 PM

Los Angeles Managing Partner J. Scott Tiedemann and associate attorney Leighton Henderson helped secure an important victory for law enforcement agencies on May 30, 2017.  Tiedemann and Henderson submitted an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs’ Association.

The Court’s decision eliminated the “provocation doctrine” which provided that an officer’s otherwise reasonable use of force could still be a basis for civil liability in some circumstances.  That legal doctrine was difficult for police agencies to administer in training officers on the appropriate use of force, and was incompatible with existing standards governing the use of force under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.  With the elimination of the provocation doctrine, the exclusive test for determining if an officer’s use of force complies with the Fourth Amendment is whether the force is objectively reasonable under the totality of the circumstances. 

County of Los Angeles v. Mendez (2017) 137 S.Ct. 1539.

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