University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Dunn v. City of Chicago PN-IL-0008
Docket / Court 1:04-CV-06804 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Policing
Attorney Organization Loevy & Loevy
Case Summary
On October 21, 2004, a group of former Chicago Police Department (CPD) detainees filed this class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the CPD. Represented by the Chicago civil rights law firm Loevy & Loevy, the plaintiffs ... read more >
On October 21, 2004, a group of former Chicago Police Department (CPD) detainees filed this class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the CPD. Represented by the Chicago civil rights law firm Loevy & Loevy, the plaintiffs alleged that the CPD were engaged in a unconstitutional pattern and practice of detaining persons under its control for excessive periods of time and under poor conditions. Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged that the Department routinely and secretly detained suspects in police station interrogation rooms for lengthy periods of time, up to 48 hours without sleep or food, in attempts to develop legal grounds for detaining them. These unlawful detentions, plaintiffs alleged, amounted to physical and psychological "soft torture" and produced scores of false confessions. Plaintiffs sought monetary damages and class certification.

On June 13, 2005, the plaintiffs moved for certification of three separate classes: (1) those subjected to interrogation room detentions for over 16 hours; (2) those held in the department lock-up and deprived of adequate accommodations for sleep; and (3) those detained by police for over 48 hours without a probable cause hearing. Defendants objected to certification of Class I and III, but consented to certification of Class II.

On October 5, 2005, U.S. District Judge Robert W. Gettleman granted plaintiffs' motion with respect to the Class II and III. Class II was defined as: "All persons held in a CPD lock-up or detective division facility between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. at any time from October 12, 2002, to the date of this order." Class III was defined as: "All persons arrested on suspicion of a felony without an arrest warrant and who were detained by the CPD in excess of 48 hours without a judicial probable cause hearing at any time from August 15, 1999, to the date of this order." Judge Gettleman denied certification as to first class because the claims of the only proposed representative of the first class was barred by the statute of limitations. 231 F.R.D. 367 (N.D.Ill. Oct 05, 2005). The plaintiffs later added a new representative for Class I and renewed their motion to certify this class. Judge Gettleman granted the motion on June 2, 2006.

While the certification issues were being resolved by the court, the parties engaged in substantial discovery. Many disputes arose, causing the parties to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sidney I. Schenkier over 20 times. The CPD was ordered to produce, among other materials, computerized arrest data and a sampling of 3,000 paper arrest records. The plaintiffs used the arrest data to create a database which would be used to identify the members of the various classes.

Judge Schenkier held a series of settlement conferences beginning on September 21, 2006 and continuing over the next year. On October 6, 2010, the Court gave final approval of the negotiated class action settlement. The defendants were required to fund a settlement fund of up to $16.5 million to pay settlement class members. The agreement specified the following awards for each class:

• Members of Class I (detained for longer than 16 hours) were eligible for an award of up to $2,000;
• Members of Class II (detained overnight without adequate accommodations for sleep) were eligible for an award of up to $90; and
• Members of Class III (detained for longer than 48 hours without a probable cause hearing) were eligible for an award of up to $3,000.

The defendants were also required to pay for all costs related to the claims administration for the settlement. The agreement also allowed for an attorneys' fee award not to exceed $5 million, and attorneys' costs and expenses not to exceed $70,000.

On April 19, 2013, Judge Schenkier issued an order stating that the entirety of damages had been paid and any remainder of the settlement fund would be returned to the City of Chicago.

Dan Dalton - 02/11/2008
Andrew Steiger - 01/28/2014
John He - 02/29/2016


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Unreasonable search and seizure
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Law-enforcement
General
Conditions of confinement
Failure to discipline
Failure to supervise
Failure to train
False arrest
Over/Unlawful Detention
Pattern or Practice
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) City of Chicago
Plaintiff Description Individuals detained by Chicago police (1) in interrogation rooms for over 16 hours; (2) over night in lock-up without bedding; (3) over 48 hours without a probable cause hearing
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Loevy & Loevy
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Damages
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2013
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing PN-IL-0009 : Lopez v. City of Chicago (N.D. Ill.)
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Federal Enforcement of Police Reform
By: Stephen Rushin (University of Illinois College of Law, University of California, Berkeley - Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program )
Citation: 82 Fordham Law Review 3189 (2014)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Panopticism for Police: Structural Reform Bargaining and Police Regulation by Data-Driven Surveillance
By: Mary D. Fan (University of Washington)
Citation: Forthcoming, 87 Washington L. Rev. __ (2012).
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  What Happens When Police Are Forced to Reform?
Written: Nov. 13, 2015
By: Kimbriell Kelly, Sarah Childress and Steven Rich (Frontline/Post)
Citation: Washington Post (Nov. 13, 2015)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:04-cv-06804 (N.D. Ill.) 04/19/2013
PN-IL-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 10/21/2004
PN-IL-0008-0001.pdf | Detail
Plaintiffs' Reply in support of their Motion for Class Certification 08/08/2005
PN-IL-0008-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Opinion and Order 10/05/2005 (231 F.R.D. 367) (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Opinion and Order 11/30/2005 (2005 WL 3299391 / 2005 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 30888) (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0007.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Order Granting Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement and Directing Notice to Settlement Classes 05/14/2010 (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action Release and Settlement Agreement 05/14/2010
PN-IL-0008-0008.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Final Approval of Class Action Settlement and Final Judgment 10/06/2010 (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 04/19/2013 (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0006.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Gettleman, Robert William (N.D. Ill.)
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-0004 | PN-IL-0008-0005 | PN-IL-0008-0006 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Schenkier, Sidney I. (N.D. Ind.) [Magistrate]
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Ainsworth, Russel R. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Donnell, Heather Lewis (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Flaxman, Kenneth N. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Jenkins, Matthew T (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Kanovitz, Michael I. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-0008 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Keen, Roshna Bala (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Loevy, Arthur R. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Loevy, Jonathan I. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0001 | PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Rosenblatt, Jonathan A. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Baker, Stephen Paul (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Crowl, Matthew Charles (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Dolesh, Mike (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Ellis, Sara Lee (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Georges, Mara Stacy (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-0008 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Ghezzi, June K. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Holmes, Patricia Brown (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Hurricane, Jean H (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Kelly, Catherine M. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Kokolis, Aphrodite (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Mincy, J. Ernest III (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0007 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Mock, Matthew B (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Muhammad, Jamal S (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Murray, Brian Joseph (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Natter, Lisa M (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Roeb, Craig Alan (California)
PN-IL-0008-9000
Sheerin, Caroline K. (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0002 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Skiermont, Karey Vering (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Winchester, Jason Graham (Illinois)
PN-IL-0008-0003 | PN-IL-0008-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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