Michael A. D’Anton, Ph.D. successfully defended an appeal to the New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division, on behalf of the Township of Nutley and two of its police officers. In Pace v. Township of Nutley, et al., Plaintiffs alleged that Nutley Police Officers violated their civil rights when officers responded to a domestic violence incident at their home. Plaintiffs alleged that the use of pepper spray and handcuffs when two of the family members were arrested was excessive. They also alleged that police officers unlawfully entered plaintiffs’ dwelling.
Initially, Dr. D’Anton successfully argued that summary judgment was warranted before the Honorable Dennis F. Carey III, C.P.J. Subsequently, the Appellate Division affirmed Judge Carey’s opinion and held that the use of pepper spray was objectively reasonable when one of the actors pushed the officer. Probable cause existed to arrest both actors and the Court held that the incident in question was a domestic violence incident contrary to Plaintiffs’ assertions.
The link to the story, which appeared on nj.com can be found here: http://www.nj.com/essex/index.ssf/2017/07/use_of_pepper_spray_justified_after_cops_called_55.html