Smith v. Agdeppa

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Qualified Immunity
  • Date Filed: 12-30-2022
  • Case #: 20-56254
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Christen, J. for the Court; Bress, J.; Feinerman, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

When other evidence in the record, “such as medical reports, contemporaneous statements by the officer, the available physical evidence, and any expert testimony proffered by the plaintiff” is inconsistent with material evidence offered by the defendant, “[q]ualified immunity should not be granted.” Newmaker v. City of Fortuna, 842 F.3d 1108, 1116 (9th Cir. 2016).

Officer Agdeppa responded to an emergency call and used deadly force against Dorsey, who was resisting arrest. An action was brought against Agdeppa, alleging that he had used unreasonable deadly force that was unconstitutional. Agdeppa sought qualified immunity but the district court denied the motion finding a reasonable jury could determine Agdeppa's use of deadly force was unreasonable. Agdeppa appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing that the district court erred in denying his request for qualified immunity. The Court held that the district court did not err in denying the request, affirming that a reasonable jury could conclude that Agdeppa’s use of deadly force was unreasonable. The Court reasoned that because Agdeppa did not give a warning before using deadly force would alone be reason for a jury to determine that deadly force was unreasonable. However, coupled with the fact that Agdeppa’s version of events are contradictory to the record that includes witness statements, medical records, and body camera footage. The Court affirmed the district court’s decision to deny qualified immunity.

Advanced Search

Back to Top