University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Elliot v. City of New York PN-NY-0043
Docket / Court 12-cv-0992 ( S.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Policing
Special Collection Occupy
Case Summary
Two Occupy Wall Street protesters brought this suit on February 8, 2012 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The plaintiffs sued the City of New York and the New York Police Department. During a 2011 demonstration, plaintiffs were pepper sprayed by highly-ranked police ... read more >
Two Occupy Wall Street protesters brought this suit on February 8, 2012 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The plaintiffs sued the City of New York and the New York Police Department. During a 2011 demonstration, plaintiffs were pepper sprayed by highly-ranked police officer. Defendant officers further assaulted and detained the plaintiffs, all without a warrant or legal process. The plaintiffs brought this cause of action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging violations of the First, Fourth, and Fourteenth Amendments, and claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1988, as well as state civil rights law. Represented by private counsel, the plaintiffs sought monetary relief for physical pain and mental suffering due to the violations.

On May 21, 2014, the court related 9 other cases to this case for further proceedings. Two of these cases are in the Clearinghouse under Crisp v. The City of New York and Lawler v. City of New York . On March 9, 2015, Judge Robert W. Sweet reassigned the case to Magistrate Judge Michael H. Dolinger for general pretrial matters, including scheduling, discovery, and settlement.

On June 30, 2015, the parties reached a settlement and agreed to resolve the remaining issues raised in the complaint without further proceedings and without admitting any fault or liability. The court dismissed the claim with prejudice, but retained jurisdiction over the action to enforce the terms of the settlements between parties.

According to The New York Times, the defendant paid a total of $332,500 in damages (between $52,000 to $60,000 to each plaintiff). Additionally, the New York Times reports that the NYPD released a statement saying that the NYPD has not altered its pepper spray guidelines.

Abigail DeHart - 10/06/2016
Sean Mulloy - 11/06/2017


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Freedom of speech/association
Unreasonable search and seizure
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
General
Aggressive behavior
Excessive force
Failure to discipline
Failure to supervise
Failure to train
Over/Unlawful Detention
Pepper/OC spray
Personal injury
Restraints : chemical
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
State law
Defendant(s) New York City
Plaintiff Description Two female protestors from the Occupy Wall Street movement who were unlawfully detained and pepper sprayed.
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Damages
Unknown
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2015 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2015
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing PN-NY-0035 : Crisp v. City of New York (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0034 : Lawler v. City of New York (S.D.N.Y.)
Additional Resources
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  New York City to Pay Up to $75 Million Over Dismissed Summonses
New York Times
Date: Jan. 23, 2017
By: Benjamin Weiser (New York Times)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Bravo v. Board of Commissioners of Dona Ana County
http://www.bazelon.org/
Date: 2017
By: The Bazelon Center (The Bazelon Center)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:12-cv-992 (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/23/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
PN-NY-0043-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/08/2012
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 19] (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/21/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order of Dismissal [ECF# 41-1] (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/02/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order of Dismissal [ECF# 42] (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/23/2015
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Dolinger, Michael H. (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-9000
Sweet, Robert Workman (S.D.N.Y.)
PN-NY-0043-0002 | PN-NY-0043-0003
Plaintiff's Lawyers Aboushi, Aymen A. (New York)
PN-NY-0043-0001 | PN-NY-0043-0002 | PN-NY-0043-0004 | PN-NY-0043-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Lapietra, Louis C. (New York)
PN-NY-0043-9000
Lucas, Andrew Joseph (New York)
PN-NY-0043-9000
Weiss, Dara Lynn (New York)
PN-NY-0043-0002 | PN-NY-0043-0004 | PN-NY-0043-9000

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