HSRD Attorneys Brian Olney and Rebecca Brown Featured in Press Coverage of Lawsuit to Stop LAPD’s Unconstitutional Traffic Stop Policy

Media outlets including the Los Angeles Times, CBS, ABC 7, BET, My News LA, Westside Current, the National Lawyers Guild Radio Show, KNX News 97.1, and 104.3 FM featured HSRD attorneys Brian Olney and Rebecca Brown discussing HSRD’s lawsuit against the LAPD to end its unconstitutional policy of conducting violent traffic stops based only upon often erroneous information from police databases indicating a suspicion of property crimes. The lawsuit is filed on behalf of community organizations Community Coalition and Black Lives Matter-Los Angeles, and on behalf of Sheilanee Sen, who was subjected to this unconstitutional practice in 2020. The articles and radio interviews explain that LAPD has an official policy of requiring its officers to use aggressive “high-risk” tactics with motorists whenever they suspect the vehicles may be stolen but no other unlawful conduct. In these situations, LAPD requires up to 20 officers and a police helicopter to come to the scene, hold everyone inside the car at gunpoint, force the driver and passengers to lie face down and spread-eagle in the street, and handcuff them. LAPD officers engage in such terrifying conduct even when the motorists are cooperative, follow all police commands, and present no threat. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal declared such a policy unconstitutional in 2014, but the LAPD has defied the Court and continues to terrify and traumatize innocent Angelenos with its unlawful practices. The Los Angeles Times quoted HSRD attorney Rebecca Brown, “not only are these stops dangerous and ineffective for public safety, they’re also illegal.”

Read the complaint here.

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