Thursday, August 27, 2015

"Hot pursuit" requires "immediate or continuous" pursuit from crime scene

Attocknie v. Smith, 2015 WL 4998275 (8/24/15)(Okla.) - In this 42 USC ยง 1983 civil rights action, the district court properly denied qualified immunity to officers who were attempting to serve a year-old bench warrant on a man who apparently had not complied with his drug court conditions. Officers mistakenly believed they saw him running into the house, busted in, and immediately shot and killed the man's son. Turns out the guy they were after was not even there. Officers' qualified immunity defense to the unlawful entry claim was based on hot pursuit of a fleeing felon, which the Tenth explains is seriously flawed because hot pursuit requires "immediate or continuous" pursuit of a suspect from the crime scene.