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Government Immunity

Civil Rights Litigation & Police Accountability


An urgent and definitive examination of how the legal system prevents accountability for police misconduct, from one of the country's leading scholars on policing.

Civil Rights Without Representation, 64 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 641 (2023)

Lexipol's Fight Against Police Reform (with Ingrid V. Eagly), 97 Ind. L.J. 1 (2022)

New Federalism and Civil Rights Enforcement (with James E. Pfander and Alexander A. Reinert), 116 Nw. U. L. Rev. 737 (2021)

Civil Rights Ecosystems, 114 Michigan L. Rev. 1539 (2020)

Systems Failures in Policing, 51 Suffolk U. L. Rev. 535 (2018)

Lexipol: The Privatization of Police Policymaking (with Ingrid V. Eagly), 96 Texas L. Rev. 891 (2018)

Who Can Police the Police?, 2016 Chi. Legal F. 437

​How Governments Pay: Lawsuits, Budgets, and Police Reform, 63 UCLA L. Rev. 1144 (2016)

Police Indemnification, 89 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 885 (2014)

What Police Learn from Lawsuits, 33 Cardozo L. Rev. 841 (2012)

Myths and Mechanics of Deterrence: The Role of Lawsuits in Law Enforcement Decisionmaking, 57 UCLA L. Rev. 1023 (2010)


Going Rogue: The Supreme Court’s Newfound Hostility to Policy-Based Bivens Claims (with James E. Pfander and Alexander A. Reinert), 96 Notre Dame L. Rev. 1835 (2021)

The Myth of Personal Liability: Who Pays When Bivens Claims Succeed (with James E. Pfander and Alexander A. Reinert), 72 Stanford L. Rev. 561 (2020)

Civil Litigation & Procedure

The Cost of Suing Business, 65 DePaul L. Rev. 655 (2016)

Introspection through Litigation, 90 Notre Dame L. Rev. 1055 (2015)

A Dose of Reality for Medical Malpractice Reform, 88 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 1224 (2013)

Gateways and Pathways in Civil Procedure, 60 UCLA L. Rev. 1652 (2013)


How Public Safety in Minneapolis Can Begin Its Next Chapter (Minneapolis Star-Tribune, July 7, 2023)

"Well, Is There Blood on the Street?": Why So Few Lawyers Are Willing to Take Civil-Rights Cases (The Atlantic Apr. 2, 2023)

Qualified Immunity is Burning a Hole in the Constitution (Politico Feb. 19, 2023)

How the Supreme Court Protects Police Officers (The Atlantic Jan. 31, 2023)

How Can We Get Justice for Tyre Nichols and Other Victors of Police Brutality? (LA Times Jan. 27, 2023)

To Reform Policing Accountability, States Need Not Wait on Supreme Court and Congress (USA Today, Feb. 5, 2022) (with Alex Reinert and James Pfander)

He Died After a Cop Kneeled on His Neck for Fourteen Minutes. Now His Family Can Finally Sue (USA Today, Dec. 29, 2021)

Supreme Court Just Doubled Down on Flawed Qualified Immunity Rule. Why That Matters (USA Today, Oct. 19, 2021)

Ending Qualified Immunity Won’t Ruin Cops’ Finances. It Will Better Protect the Public (USA Today, Oct. 14, 2021)

The Supreme Court Is Giving Lower Courts a Subtle Hint to Rein In Police Misconduct (The Atlantic, Mar. 4, 2021)

Hold Prosecutors Accountable, Too (Boston Review, June 22, 2020) (with Kate Levine)

Suing the Police for Abuse is Nearly Impossible. The Supreme Court Can Fix That (The Washington Post, June 3, 2020)

The Simple Way Congress Can Stop Federal Officers from Abusing Prisoners (Politico, June 10, 2020) (with James Pfander and Alex Reinert)

Learning From Litigation (New York Times, May 16, 2013)

Watching the Detectives (New York Times, June 15, 2011)




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