That trial wasn't to be— the defendant pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in October 2015. But now, in 2017, Bridges still hasn't gotten his handgun and other items back, the complaint alleges.From courthousenews.com:
Bridges claims Cleveland police unlawfully seized his property, “including a Glock 21 semiautomatic handgun, ammunition, holsters and a redcherry piccolo,” to be used as evidence in Akins-Daniels’ case.Replevin:
Despite the fact that the criminal proceedings against Akins-Daniels are over, police have not returned Bridges’ guns, he says.
Bridges noted in his complaint that he is a professional security guard and has a license to carry a concealed handgun.
He sued for replevin and violation of the Second and Fourth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
Bridges seeks $20,000 in compensatory damages and $50,000 in punitive damages. He also wants an injunction to stop the city from “enforcing any policy and/or actions that infringe upon a lawful gun owner’s right to keep and bear arms.”
n. under Common Law, the right to bring a lawsuit for recovery of goods improperly taken by another. In almost all states the term replevin in no longer used, since the states have adopted "one cause of action" for all civil wrongs.This isn't the first time Cleveland has been sued for keeping a firearm without justification. In effect, this is legalized theft. It usually costs more in legal fees to obtain a court order to have the property returned than the gun is worth. It is a common problem in urban areas.
In February of 2013, Cleveland searched the car of Derrick J. Washington, a witness who reported a shooting that he heard. The police wrongly stated that there was a warrant for Washington's arrest. He showed them his concealed carry permit and told them his gun was in a locked container in his car.
They searched his car and found the pistol in the locked box. The police had confiscated Washington's pistol and concealed carry permit. They then arrested Washington.
Derrick J. Washington spent three nights in jail while they discovered the error. The city prosecutor refused to charge Washington. Washington repeatedly asked for his pistol back. The city refused. Washington sued in federal court. The city settled with Washington and returned his pistol in November of 2013. He also received $1,000 for his trouble, $5,500 in attorney fees, and $250 in court costs.
In the current case, Brian Bridges' attorney Michael J. Connick is suing in the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, which is where Derrick J. Washington started his lawsuit. At least Bridges was not arrested and forced to spend three days in jail.
I suspect the lawsuits will have the same result, but courts can be chancy. The city may not decide to settle, or they may settle before the case reaches the federal court.
We should find out in the next few months.
©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.