CA9: Officer putting gun to head of handcuffed compliant suspect and threatening to kill him was excessive force, but QI applied

“Examining the facts in the light most favorable to plaintiff, the non-moving party on summary judgment, the panel assumed that the police officer did indeed point his gun at plaintiff’s head and threatened to kill him. The panel held that under the circumstances, defendant’s use of force in arresting plaintiff was not objectively reasonable. The panel held that where, as in this case, officers have an unarmed felony suspect under control, where they easily could have handcuffed the suspect while he was sitting on the squad car, and where the suspect is not in close proximity to an accessible weapon, a gun to the head constitutes excessive force under the Fourth Amendment. [¶] The panel nevertheless held that although the use of excessive force violated plaintiff’s constitutional rights, defendant was entitled to qualified immunity because plaintiff’s right not to have a gun pointed at him under the circumstances was not clearly established at the time the events took place.” [Summary by the court.] Thompson v. Rahr, 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 6191 (9th Cir. Mar. 13, 2018).

Defendant’s cell phone was seized at the border then accidentally destroyed by the government while getting a search warrant. No bad faith; no due process violation under Arizona v. Youngblood. United States v. Manjarrez, 2018 U.S. App. LEXIS 6225 (9th Cir. Mar. 13, 2018).*

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