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Browder v. City of Albuquerque, 787 F.3d 1076 (10th Cir. June 2, 2015)

Jun 2, 2015

Plaintiff’s complaint alleged that off-duty police officer inexplicably “used his official squad car and activated its emergency lights and proceeded to speed through surface city streets at more than 60 miles per hour over 8.8 miles through eleven city intersections and at least one red light – all for his personal pleasure, on no governmental business of any kind[,]” eventually colliding with and killing plaintiff. Defendant moved to dismiss plaintiff’s 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim on grounds of qualified immunity. The Court held that a § 1983 claim survives a motion to dismiss for qualified immunity where the officer exhibits a conscience-shocking deliberate indifference to the lives around him, and this constitutes a deprivation of substantive due process.