University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Thompson v. City of Flint PN-MI-0004
Docket / Court 07-11107 ( E.D. Mich. )
State/Territory Michigan
Case Type(s) Policing
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Attorney Organization Michigan ACLU
Case Summary
On March 15, 2007, men and women who attended a music event at a nightclub in Flint, Michigan filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C § 1983 against the City of Flint Police Department and Genesee County Sheriff Department in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Southern ... read more >
On March 15, 2007, men and women who attended a music event at a nightclub in Flint, Michigan filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C § 1983 against the City of Flint Police Department and Genesee County Sheriff Department in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division. The plaintiffs, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, asked the court for injunctive, declaratory, and monetary relief, alleging that police violated the plaintiff's rights against unreasonable search and seizure and freedom of speech, association and assembly under the United States Constitution. Plaintiffs also claimed state law violations including false arrest and false imprisonment, unlawful strip search under MCL §764.25a, unlawful body cavity search under MCL§764.25b, assault and battery, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

On March 19, 2005 the plaintiffs attended an electronic music event at a night club in Flint, MI. The Flint Police Department and Genesee County Sheriff's Department sent undercover officers to the event. Four patrons allegedly sold drugs to the officers. Subsequently, the police arrested all patrons in the club. The plaintiffs were detained, charged with a crime, strip searched, and in some cases subjected to body cavity searches, because of their presence at the club. Plaintiffs were charged with Frequenting a Disorderly House (Flint City Ordinance §31-11). On October 13, 2006, the Genesee County Circuit Court ruled there was no probable cause for the plaintiffs' arrests, and on January 9, 2007, the charges were dismissed with prejudice.

On April 6, 2007 the District Court (Judge Paul v. Gadola) declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the state law claims and dismissed them without prejudice. The parties jointly sought reconsideration. On June 8, 2007 the District Court (Judge Gadola) vacated the order dismissing the state law claims. On September 4, 2008 the case was reassigned from District Judge Paul V. Gadola to District Judge Stephen J. Murphy, III.

On October 21, 2009 the parties reached a settlement agreement, which required the City of Flint to establish policies regarding strip searches and body cavity searches and to implement a training program for law enforcement officers regarding strip searches. On October 26, 2009 the plaintiffs filed a motion to certify the settlement class. On December 14, 2009, the District Court (Judge Stephen J. Murphy III) issued a consent decree approving the settlement agreement and settlement class. On February 23, 2010, the District Court (Judge Murphy) issued a stipulated order of dismissal with prejudice.

Joe Reiter - 03/17/2011


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Unreasonable search and seizure
General
Excessive force
Failure to supervise
Failure to train
False arrest
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action State law
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) City of Flint
Genesee County
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are men and women who attended an electronic music event at a night club in Flint, MI. They were detained, charged with a crime, strip searched, and in some cases body cavity searched, because of their presence at the club.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Michigan ACLU
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2009
Case Ongoing No
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)
2:07-cv-11107-SJM-MJH (E.D. Mich.) 02/23/2010
PN-MI-0004-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
ORDER OF PARTIAL DISMISSAL WITHOUT PREJUDICE 04/06/2007 (2007 WL 1101218 / 2007 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 25716) (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0005 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
UNOPPOSED MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION OF THE COURT’S ORDER OF PARTIAL DISMISSAL WITHOUT PREJUDICE AND BRIEF IN SUPPORT OF MOTION 04/19/2007
PN-MI-0004-0006 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
ORDER 06/08/2007 (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0007 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DAMAGES, INJUNCTIVE, AND DECLARATORY RELIEF WITH RELIANCE ON JURY DEMAND 07/08/2008
PN-MI-0004-0001 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
NOTICE OF REASSIGNMENT 09/04/2008 (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0009 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
ORDER OF RECUSAL AND REASSIGNMENT 05/20/2009 (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0008 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
TERMS OF EQUITABLE RELIEF 10/21/2009
PN-MI-0004-0003 PDF | Detail
Document Source:
ORDER CERTIFYING SETTLEMENT CLASS, AND APPROVING SETTLEMENT, ATTORNEYS’ FEES AND COSTS, PLAN OF ALLOCATION, AND APPOINTMENT OF CLASS REPRESENTATIVE 12/14/2009 (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0002 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
STIPULATED ORDER OF VOLUNTARY DISMISSAL WITH PREJUDICE 02/23/2010 (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0004 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Gadola, Paul V. (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0005 | PN-MI-0004-0007 | PN-MI-0004-0009
Murphy, Stephen Joseph III (E.D. Mich.)
PN-MI-0004-0002 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-0009 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Whalen, R. Steven (E.D. Mich.) [Magistrate]
PN-MI-0004-0008
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Crane, Maureen M. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Ellias, Lauri R. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Gibbs, Gregory T. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Jacobs, Elizabeth L. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Korobkin, Daniel S. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-9000
Mogill, Kenneth M. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Pitt, Peggy Goldberg (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Pitt, Michael L. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0003 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Steinberg, Michael J. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0001 | PN-MI-0004-0006 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Edmunds, Michael W. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Gilmer, Randall D. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Klemptner, Daniel A. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0003 | PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Morris, Gus G. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-9000
Reising, William H. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-0004 | PN-MI-0004-9000
Young, Trachelle C. (Michigan)
PN-MI-0004-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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