Bechman v. Magill, et al., No. 13-1142 (8th Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff filed suit against police officers under 42 U.S.C. 1983 for violating her constitutional rights. The district court denied the officers qualified immunity and the officers filed an interlocutory appeal. The court concluded that the district court correctly determined that no reasonable police officer could actually believe that plaintiff's warrantless arrest was lawful, given the information supplied to the officers and the circumstances surrounding the arrest. The officers arrived at plaintiff's door when she was nursing her infant and lead her out of her home in handcuffs based on an invalid, recalled arrest warrant for failure to appear to contest a simple traffic violation. After she was given a strip search and body cavity search, plaintiff was detained in jail overnight, the first time she had been separated from her infant. Because the court affirmed the district court's denial of qualified immunity on the grounds of the warrantless arrest, the court did not address whether the humiliating indignities suffered by plaintiff as a result of the officers' conduct constituted an independent rationale for a section 1983 claim on unreasonable seizure. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment of the district court.