Scotus on Restraining Orders


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GEM
June 27, 2005, 12:25 PM
A lesson perhaps that we all know - from the ABC site.

Restraining Orders

The Supreme Court ruled that police cannot be sued for how they enforce restraining orders, ending a lawsuit by a Colorado woman who claimed police did not do enough to prevent her estranged husband from killing her three young daughters.

Jessica Gonzales did not have a constitutional right to police enforcement of the court order against her husband, the court said in a 7-2 opinion.

City governments had feared that if the court ruled the other way, it would unleash a potentially devastating flood of cases that could bankrupt municipal governments.

Gonzales contended that police did not do enough to stop her estranged husband, who took the three daughters from the front yard of her home in June 1999 in violation of a restraining order.

Hours later Simon Gonzales died in a gun fight with officers outside a police station. The bodies of the three girls, ages 10, 9 and 7, were in his truck.

Gonzales argued that she was entitled to sue based on her rights under the 14th Amendment and under Colorado law that says officers shall use every reasonable means to enforce a restraining order. She contended that her restraining order should be considered property under the 14th Amendment and that it was taken from her without due process when police failed to enforce it.

The case is Castle Rock, Colo., v. Gonzales, 04-278.

For more on the case, Click Here.

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TheFederalistWeasel
June 27, 2005, 12:35 PM
And this is new to whom?

Itís more or less been the rule of thumb for along time.

SCOTUS has logically held for years that cops and departments cannot be sued for this type of stuff for several reasons, notwithstanding the simple fact that if these types of suits were allowed to go forth you would find yourself in a land with very few if not any cops at all.

At present there are only 600,000 cops in the US of A for a population of nearly 300 million.

Imagine a senario where the US of A only had 12,000 cops or 1,200 cops, thinks its unlikely, think again the pay already sucks, QOL already is almost poverty level and the divorce rate among cops is astronomical. Toss in the serious likelihood that you will be sued for something you have absolutely no control over such as someones crazy ex-husband or pyscho ex-girlfriend.

And man...

And while that would tickle many here pink and purple I find it hard to believe that anyone here would for a minute think that an absence of cops would be good in the cases of those who are statically more likely to commit crimes.

Such as those who would be inclined to take drugs and steal to support a habit

Gang Bangers who spend Friday evenings doing drive-bys and robbing folks at gunpoint at ATM machines.

If you for a minute think that certain elements in our society would not take advantage of a situation such as one where a town, which normally would have 400 cops, now can barely muster a force of 20 to 50 then you are more or less an idiot.

You want a society where people take the law into their own hands because there are no cops, just go and visit Mogadishu or some other hell on earth.

Pilgrim
June 27, 2005, 12:38 PM
Perhaps she could have made a better case from the position of a 'victim' of false advertising. She sought security. The government offered her security in the form of a restraining order. She bought the restrainng order with her tax payment. The restraining order didn't work.

Pilgrim

TheFederalistWeasel
June 27, 2005, 12:41 PM
I agree wholeheartedly that R/O's are a joke but the answer is not to sue the cops for failing to enforce them 24/7/365.

thankfully SCOTUS sees it that way too...

:(

dpesec
June 27, 2005, 12:41 PM
The governments want's to disarm us because all we need are LEOs. But, the LEO's aren't responsible to protect us? And we are to run away and not protect ourselves, except Florida of course. :banghead:

Anybody else see something wrong? :fire:

Oh, I'm not faulting the LEOs, it's just they are in a lose-lose position.

TheFederalistWeasel
June 27, 2005, 12:42 PM
Anybody else see something wrong?


Yes, the politicians who aim to disarm you and me if they had it all and my family and yours!

:fire: :cuss:

R.H. Lee
June 27, 2005, 12:57 PM
How about suing under the commerce clause- breach of implied warranty or somesuch? Might be good for some civil damages.

oldfart
June 27, 2005, 01:07 PM
TheFederalistWeasel is partially right when he says that we would have chaos without a large police presence. His allusion to Mogadishu though is a bit misleading. The problems there weren't (aren't?) caused by ordinary citizens but by overly powerful politicians who use some of those citizens to form an army of thugs.
I'm not so naive as to believe America would be better off with fewer police but I do think we'd be ahead if the police weren't quite so insulated from the public they are supposed to serve. The occasions where police officers have been successfully prosecuted for killing unarmed citizens are so rare they can be all but ignored by rank and file LEOs. Almost without exception the officer gets off by saying something to the effect that he thought the guy was pulling a gun. When an ordinary citizen can win his case by using the same arguement after killing a police officer I will finally believe the playing field is level.
If we were to suffer a sudden shortage of police officers because they feel threatened by the legal system it would merely be time for ordinary citizens to step into the breach, just as they are supposed to. Unfortunately, we've had several generations of reliance upon government to solve all our problems. We would have a difficult time weaning ourselves from that teat.

Waitone
June 27, 2005, 05:26 PM
The problem with restraining orders is they give the impression to the abused the might of the judicial system is behind them in their fight with the opposition. They go before a judge in a court with LE etc, all the trappings of legal power present at the birth of the RO. They then walk out with a sheet of paper that says the same judicial system will sicc the bad person should the bad person violate the provisions of the RO.

What the system doesn't say is crucial. I'd love to have the judge recite the equivelent of a Miranda statement to one who just received a RO such as:
Mr/Mrs./Ms Whatever, you've just been given a RO for XXXXXXXX. Do not make the mistake of assuming the legal system will protect you from YYYYY should they decided to violate terms of this order. You are on your own to protect yourself. We will simply do the paperwork should something unfortunate happen. Have a nice day.

Derby FALs
June 27, 2005, 05:45 PM
I must be naive. :neener:

SCOTUS has logically held for years that cops and departments cannot be sued for this type of stuff for several reasons, notwithstanding the simple fact that if these types of suits were allowed to go forth you would find yourself in a land with very few if not any cops at all.

HKrazy
June 27, 2005, 05:54 PM
This decision is yet another example of why the Second Amendment and the right to self-defense is so important and necessary.

Hey, Brady bunch and Marching Mommies... If the police can't protect you, who will?

CZ-100
June 27, 2005, 07:26 PM
The governments want's to disarm us because all we need are LEOs. But, the LEO's aren't responsible to protect us? And we are to run away and not protect ourselves, except Florida of course.

Not until October 1st. :cool:

TallPine
June 27, 2005, 07:35 PM
I find it hard to believe that anyone here would for a minute think that an absence of cops would be good in the cases of those who are statically more likely to commit crimes.
Wasn't there a case in some city (Albuquerque, maybe?) where the police force went on strike, and the crime rate actually went down dramatically during the strike?

Seems the BGs were more afraid of armed citizens than police, especially while the police weren't around to keep the citizens in line. ;)

Standing Wolf
June 27, 2005, 08:07 PM
I'd love to have the judge recite the equivelent of a Miranda statement to one who just received a RO...

Oh, fine! Go ahead and advocate truth in advertising! See if I care!

XLMiguel
June 27, 2005, 08:45 PM
Tallpine -
It was Albuquerque. My SIL lives there and her neighbor was an Albuquerque LEO. It was avery amusing story she told about picking up one of their 'frequent flyers' after the Blue Flu was over. The scummie was happy that the cops were back on the job because during the job action, the locals were doing the neighborhood watch thing openly (and well) armed. His basic tqake on it was that if you were out TCOB and got caught by the cops, all you got was arrested, '. . . but them damn citizens, they'll kill ya!!' :evil:

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