This site is devoted to increasing public awareness of police misconduct and detainee abuse in addition to providing support for victims of police misconduct and detainee abuse. If you or someone you know have witnessed abuse or have been abused, please let us know.


This site is an archive of older content.

Please feel free to visit our new effort at

Thank you for visiting.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

City Pays For Cop To Sue Civilians

In early July we reported on the case of Zsolt Dornay and how he is using tax payer funds to sue a man that he shot, along with four others who were involved in allegedly attacking him while he was off-duty, and in plain clothes, after he had allegedly hit a woman with his motorcycle and then threw her against a wall when his bike had been tipped over in 2006. Well, the story just got much more disturbing...

It's already a matter of public record that, after a lengthy investigation into the incident that included both the Seattle Police Department and an outside police department that was brought in after allegations were made that Seattle police were pressuring witnesses, prosecutors stated that no charges would be filed against the people who allegedly attacked the officer because the attack was justified given that it was done in response to the perceived danger that was posed to the woman the officer allegedly ran over and then assaulted.

Well, now the City of Seattle has reportedly paid at least $76,000 so far for a private law firm, retained under the city's contract with the Seattle Police Officer's Union to defend officers against civil rights suits, to sue these people in a civil suit on the officer's behalf. Which means, of course, that the officer and law firm would get the winnings, not the city or taxpayers.

Meanwhile, the civilians who have been named as defendants in that case have no such funding, they don't have a law firm paid for by taxpayer money. Indeed, some of them appear to be facing the nightmare scenario of going into court without any representation whatsoever to defend themselves against a multi-million dollar law firm that has received millions of dollars in taxpayer money defending misbehaving cops... simply because they cannot afford legal representation.

We know this, unfortunately, because one of those defendants contacted us, desperately trying to find out what to do since he cannot afford a lawyer. While we are currently trying to help him find a lawyer, it's a difficult endeavor considering he doesn't stand to win anything from defending himself against such a suit... a suit against him that he likely funded, ironically, with the very same taxes he paid to the city.

More appalling than this is the outrageous notion that the city would be funding a police officer's private lawsuit using taxpayer money after the defendants named in the lawsuit were found innocent by prosecutors who investigated the very same case. While, if this were a criminal case, the defendants could get a public defender, but since this is a civil suit, there is no such legal assistance available to defend against this city-funded attack.

How insanely unjust is it that a man who was found by government prosecutors to have legal justification for his actions on that night in 2006 to now face a private lawsuit financed by the city on behalf of the person who he was found to have legal justification to act against? A lawsuit that taxpayer can't even afford to defend himself against in a court of law?

It's absurd, it's unjust, and frankly, what the city is doing, with taxpayer money, should be considered a criminal offense in it's own right!

No comments:

Clicky Web Analytics