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Case Name Barnes v. Camden Police Department PN-NJ-0003
Docket / Court 1:10-cv-03827-RBK-JS ( D.N.J. )
State/Territory New Jersey
Case Type(s) Policing
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On June 29, 2010, a resident of Camden, New Jersey filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey under 42 U.S.C. §1983 and Article 1, Section 7 of the New Jersey Constitution against the Camden Police Department, several of its police officers, and two prosecuting ... read more >
On June 29, 2010, a resident of Camden, New Jersey filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey under 42 U.S.C. §1983 and Article 1, Section 7 of the New Jersey Constitution against the Camden Police Department, several of its police officers, and two prosecuting attorneys. The plaintiff, represented by the New Jersey chapter of the ACLU, asked the court for compensatory and punitive damages as well as injunctive relief, claiming that he had been falsely arrested, maliciously prosecuted and denied due process.

Specifically, the plaintiff claimed that the Camden Police Department had arrested him without probable cause and threatened him with charges of possession of a controlled substance unless the plaintiff told the officers the location of drugs within his friends house. Plaintiff was subsequently charged with possession of controlled substances, to which he pled guilty, and was sent to the county jail for over a year.

Prior to the filing of this lawsuit, one of the defendant officers pled guilty to conspiring to deprive others of their civil rights. He also identified at least four other members of the Camden Police Department who had also participated in the conspiracy. The officer admitted that he and the others had planted drugs on innocent people and threatened certain individuals with arrest using planted evidence if they did not criminally implicate themselves or others. Roughly 185 other criminal cases were withdrawn or vacated because of this conspiracy.

On January 14, 2011, the defendants Dow and Faulk moved to dismiss the case for failure to state a claim. Both motions were granted on June 22, 2011 and August 18, 2011, respectively.

For the remainder of the case, there were lengthy discovery proceedings.

On January 11, 2013, the District Court (Judge Robert Kugler) ordered the case be dismissed on the grounds that the parties had settled out of court. The Camden Police Department agreed to pay $3,500,000 spread between the 87 plaintiffs whose civil rights had been violated by the Camden Police Department as a result of the conspiracy.

Andrew Steiger - 10/17/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
General
False arrest
Over/Unlawful Detention
Search policies
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Camden Police Department
Plaintiff Description Individual who was arrested and convicted of possessing drugs that were planted on him by police officers.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Damages
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2013
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)
1:10-cv-03827-RBK-JS (D.N.J.) 01/29/2013
PN-NJ-0003-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 07/29/2010
PN-NJ-0003-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order to Dismiss 06/22/2011 (D.N.J.)
PN-NJ-0003-0007.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order to Dismiss 08/18/2011 (D.N.J.)
PN-NJ-0003-0006.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order to Dismiss 01/11/2013 (D.N.J.)
PN-NJ-0003-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Letter 01/29/2013
PN-NJ-0003-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Kugler, Robert B. (D.N.J.) [Magistrate]
PN-NJ-0003-0005 | PN-NJ-0003-0006 | PN-NJ-0003-0007 | PN-NJ-0003-9000
Schneider, Joel (D.N.J.) [Magistrate]
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Barocas, Edward (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-0001 | PN-NJ-0003-9000
Shalom, Alexander (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Behr, Matthew J. (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Bender, David B. (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Eastlack, John C. (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Flanagan, Brian G. (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Myles, Samuel (New Jersey)
PN-NJ-0003-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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