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File #: 2274-2013    Version: 1
Type: Ordinance Status: Passed
File created: 9/19/2013 In control: Public Safety & Judiciary Committee
On agenda: 10/7/2013 Final action: 10/10/2013
Title: To authorize the transfer of funds within the Division of Police's General Fund Budget; to authorize and direct the City Attorney to settle the civil action captioned Clarke v. Columbus, currently pending before the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division; to authorize an expenditure in the amount of Thirty Thousand Dollars in settlement of that civil action; and to declare an emergency. ($30,000.00)
Explanation
This ordinance is submitted to settle the civil action captioned Clarke v. Columbus, assigned case number 2:12-CV-1027, and currently pending before the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division.

On November 7, 2012, Julian Clarke commenced a lawsuit against the City of Columbus and two Columbus Police officers in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division. The lawsuit arises out of an investigatory detention and arrest that took place at around 4:25 a.m., on February 6, 2012, in front of 3426 Kenlawn Avenue, in Columbus, Ohio. Julian Clarke claims that Columbus Police officers unlawfully detained him and subsequently arrested him at the above-described time and place and that at least one officer employed excessive force during that detention and arrest. The Defendants maintain that the detention and the arrest were lawful and that the force employed during that detention and arrest was reasonable and within policy. The factual disputes between the parties cannot be resolved through dispositive motions, and a full trial would thus be necessary to litigate the civil action fully. Although Defendants feel they have a strong likelihood of success at such a trial, there is still an appreciable risk of an adverse judgment. Further, although Julian Clarke’s personal injuries were minor and his claimed out-of-pocket damages are minimal, an adverse judgment in this civil action would nonetheless expose the City to liability for his attorneys’ fees under 42 U.S.C. § 1988. In light of the foregoing, the City Attorney’s Office and the Department of Public Safety agree that Thirty Thousand Dollars ($30,000.00) represents a favorable pretrial settlement in light of the risks and uncertainty that Defendants would face at trial.

Fiscal Impact: Funds were not specifically budgeted for this settlement, however, this legislation also requests the transfer of funds within the Divisio...

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