Supreme Court Sides With Cops in Special Ruling

Supreme Court Sides With Cops in Special Ruling

( – The police have had an undoubtedly tough time of it lately. They’ve been on the frontlines since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and many commentators have accused them of belonging to a racist institution that unfairly inflicts violence on minorities. However, the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) struck a blow in favor of America’s law enforcement officials this week.

On Monday, October 18, SCOTUS sided with Oklahoma police officers in a case involving their fatal shooting of Dominic Rollice. The deceased’s estate filed suit against the officers in federal court, claiming they had violated his Fourth Amendment rights by using excessive force against him. The nation’s highest court ruled the police response was warranted.

Officers Brandon Vick, Josh Girdner, and Chase Reed responded to an emergency call in 2016. The caller claimed Rollice, her ex-husband, had arrived at her house intoxicated and would not leave. When the officers engaged with Rollice, he refused to submit to a weapons search before grabbing a hammer and approaching them. As he held the tool at shoulder level with both hands and approached Officer Girdner, they drew their guns and ordered him to drop the hammer. He refused, and Officers Vick and Girdner shot him dead.

The court ruled that the facts of the case entitled the officers to qualified immunity. This was the second ruling of its kind on Monday, with the SCOTUS also finding in favor of the police officers involved in a similar case out of California earlier in the day. The would-be victim, in that case, did not lose his life.

Might these rulings signal the beginning of a more productive relationship between the police and the government going forward?

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