University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Daniels v. City of New York PN-NY-0010
Docket / Court 1:99-cv-01695 ( S.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Policing
Special Collection Stop-and-Frisk (NY)
Attorney Organization Center for Constitutional Rights
Case Summary
On March 8, 1999, a class of plaintiffs--consisting of individuals subjected to stop-and-frisks, without reasonable suspicion and on the basis of race and national origin, at the hands of the Street Crimes Unit (SCU) of the New York City Police Department (NYPD)--filed a lawsuit in the United ... read more >
On March 8, 1999, a class of plaintiffs--consisting of individuals subjected to stop-and-frisks, without reasonable suspicion and on the basis of race and national origin, at the hands of the Street Crimes Unit (SCU) of the New York City Police Department (NYPD)--filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against the City of New York, the New York City Police Department, and several named and many John Doe police officers. (All claims against the NYPD were voluntarily dismissed with prejudice by a Stipulation and Order issued June 17, 1999.)

The plaintiffs, represented by various counsel--primarily including Moore & Goodman, LLP; the Center for Constitutional Rights; Debevoise & Plimpton; and Van Lierop & Burns, LLP--asked the court for damages and declaratory and injunctive relief. The plaintiffs claimed that the SCU's stop-and-frisk practice violated the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution as without reasonable suspicion required by the former and contravening the Equal Protection Clause of the latter.

On October 20, 1999, the Court (Judge Shira A. Scheindlin) dismissed plaintiffs' Equal Protection claim for failing to identify similarly-situated white individuals who were not subjected to SCU stop-and-frisks. Plaintiffs motioned to reconsider, and the Court reinstated their Equal Protection claim, finding the allegations alone were sufficient to state the claim because the complaint alleged the NYPD's policy contained an express racial or national origin classification.

The Court, finding that plaintiffs' proposed class satisfied the class action rule and that certifying the injunctive class was appropriate, approved plaintiffs' motion for class certification January 25, 2001. After the Court denied defendants' motion for reconsideration of the class certification, defendants filed a petition for leave to appeal with the United States Courts of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The Court of Appeals initially granted defendants' petition, but it reversed itself and dismissed the appeal June 12, 2001, explaining the petition had been improvidently granted.

While the case was in progress, the NYPD disbanded the SCU. Discovery and settlement discussions proceeded, and on September 24, 2003, the parties agreed to, and the Court approved, a Stipulation of Settlement, to last until December 31, 2007, during which time the Court maintained jurisdiction to enforce compliance. Prominent among the terms of the Stipulation, the NYPD was (1) to adopt a written policy pertaining to racial or national origin profiling in compliance with the United States Constitution and New York State Constitution; (2) to undergo audits, conducted by the NYPD Quality Assurance Division and to be shared with plaintiffs' counsel, assessing whether stop-and-frisks are conducted according to NYPD regulations and whether they are based upon reasonable suspicion; and (3) to provide training and public education relating to the NYPD's racial profiling policy.

The case was reopened by order of the Court September 28, 2004, for the purpose of awarding attorneys' fees. The parties, shortly thereafter, entered into another Stipulation of Settlement, in which defendants agreed to pay plaintiffs' class counsels' fees--about $3.5 million.

The court, by an oral order given April 16, 2007, extended the term of the parties' September 2003 Stipulation. Defendants motioned the court to vacate the oral order, and the court approved defendant's motion, vacating the oral order, July 16, 2007.

Just before the order expired, the plaintiffs attempted to show violation of the court order and unconstitutional race discrimination by the NYPD. At a hearing on December 21, 2007, Judge Scheindlin directed them to instead file a new lawsuit. Two months later, two of plaintiffs' counsel filed Floyd v. City of New York, PN-NY-0009 in this Clearinghouse, a new class action suit raising these issues.

David Postel - 11/11/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Unreasonable search and seizure
Content of Injunction
Auditing
Develop anti-discrimination policy
Discrimination Prohibition
Follow recruitment, hiring, or promotion protocols
Provide antidiscrimination training
Recordkeeping
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
Discrimination-basis
Language discrimination
National origin discrimination
Race discrimination
General
Disparate Impact
Disparate Treatment
Failure to discipline
Failure to supervise
Failure to train
Pattern or Practice
Racial profiling
Search policies
National Origin/Ethnicity
Hispanic
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Race
Black
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983
State law
Title VI, Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000d et seq.
Defendant(s) The City of New York
Plaintiff Description Individuals affected by the New York City Police Department's stop-and-frisk practice conducted without reasonable suspicion of criminal activity and in a manner discriminatory on the basis of race or national origin.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Center for Constitutional Rights
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2004 - 2007
Case Closing Year 2005
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing PN-NY-0009 : Floyd v. City of New York (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0014 : Ligon v. City of New York (S.D.N.Y.)
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 ]

  Jail Strip-Search Cases: Patterns and Participants
http://law.duke.edu/journals/lcp
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University in St. Louis)
Citation: 71 Law & Contemp. Problems 65 (2008)
[ 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)
1:99−cv−01695 (S.D.N.Y.) 07/16/2007
PN-NY-0010-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Opinion and Order 10/20/1999 (75 F.Supp.2d 154) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Memorandum Opinion and Order 12/14/1999 (191 F.R.D. 52) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion and Order 04/07/2000 (194 F.R.D. 88) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Memorandum Opinion and Order 05/05/2000 (194 F.R.D. 105) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion and Order 01/25/2001 (198 F.R.D. 409) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0006.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion and Order 03/08/2001 (2001 WL 228091) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion and Order 03/15/2001 (199 F.R.D. 513) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0008.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion and Order 04/12/2001 (200 F.R.D. 205) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0009.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Memorandum Opinion and Order 04/12/2001 (138 F.Supp.2d 562) (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0010-0010.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Summary Order 06/12/2001 (13 Fed.Appx. 20)
PN-NY-0010-0011.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Stipulation of Settlement 09/24/2003
PN-NY-0010-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Plaintiffs' counsel
Judges Cabranes, Jose Alberto (Second Circuit, D. Conn., FISCR)
PN-NY-0010-0011
Pitman, Henry B. (S.D.N.Y.) [Magistrate]
PN-NY-0010-9000
Sack, Robert David (Second Circuit)
PN-NY-0010-0011
Scheindlin, Shira A. (S.D.N.Y., E.D.N.Y.) [Magistrate]
PN-NY-0010-0001 | PN-NY-0010-0002 | PN-NY-0010-0003 | PN-NY-0010-0003 | PN-NY-0010-0003 | PN-NY-0010-0003 | PN-NY-0010-0004 | PN-NY-0010-0005 | PN-NY-0010-0006 | PN-NY-0010-0007 | PN-NY-0010-0008 | PN-NY-0010-0009 | PN-NY-0010-0010 | PN-NY-0010-9000
Straub, Chester J. (Second Circuit)
PN-NY-0010-0011
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Chang, Nancy (New York)
PN-NY-0010-0001 | PN-NY-0010-9000
Costello, Andrea Hope (Florida)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Cowan, Jennifer (New York)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Franklin, Karl Ferdinand (New York)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Goodman, William Harry (New York)
PN-NY-0010-0001 | PN-NY-0010-9000
Moore, Jonathan C. (New York)
PN-NY-0010-0001 | PN-NY-0010-9000
Olshansky, Barbara J. (California)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Williams, Natalie Renee (New York)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Blessinger, Peter J. (New York)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Cardozo, Michael A. (New York)
PN-NY-0010-0001
Grossman, Heidi (New York)
PN-NY-0010-0001 | PN-NY-0010-9000
Yee, Lisa S.J. (New York)
PN-NY-0010-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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