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Altadena resident Christopher Ballew, victim of a racially profiled beating by Pasadena police “gang suppression” unit at a traffic stop for tinted windows on November, 2017, prevailed in Federal Court on Friday, March 29th.
The Judge denied the City’s claims that the officers’ and supervisor’s actions had merit. The Judge went on to rebuke the attorneys the City hired to represent it in Court for misrepresentation.
Dale Gronemeier, civil rights attorney, board member of POP! (Pasadenans Organizing for Progress) reported that Ballew’s attorney, John Burton, notified him of the court order:
”John Burton just sent me the attached order in the Ballew federal court case. The City’s outside attorneys attempted to get Ballew’s claims thrown out on a motion to dismiss; with one exception, all of Ballew’s claims have survived (or will survive in the case of one that Burton needs to flesh out more) and the City was unsuccessful in getting itself, former Chief Sanchez, or Lt. Bundy out of the case.
Besides the overwhelmingly positive substantive rulings, the Judge went out of his way to admonish the City’s attorneys for unprofessional conduct in misrepresenting case authorities by deleting critical qualifying language from a decision, by misrepresenting cases, and by failing to accurately represent what Ballew pleaded – even going so far as to say that “[s]uch misrepresentations only undermine the credibility of counsel and of any and all papers counsel submits to the court.” (Fn. 2).
In 40 years of practice, I have rarely seen such a strong rebuke of counsel by a court; the City’s outside counsel are proving to be an embarrassment to the City and should be fired for their unprofessionalism.”