In this course, Ameer Benno, a New York City-based civil rights attorney, introduces viewers to the litigation of police misconduct cases, including identifying the proper parties, prerequisites to filing the lawsuit, relevant time limitations on doing so, and factors to consider in determining the proper forum in which to bring the action. This course also provides an overview of the most commonly-asserted claims and defenses under federal law, compares the relative advantages and disadvantages of state and federal law in this area, and discusses what relief is available, including statutory attorney’s fees. In addition, Mr. Benno covers some of the commonly encountered discovery issues and ethical considerations in police misconduct cases.
Mr. Benno began his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney at the esteemed Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, where, under then-District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, he served in both the trial division and the appeals bureau. In the trial division, Mr. Benno investigated and prosecuted violent and white-collar crimes and tried several jury trials to verdict, all as primary chair. In the appeals bureau, Mr. Benno handled all aspects of criminal appeals, and regularly submitted arguments to the New York State Court of Appeals, New York State’s highest tribunal.
After several years as an Assistant District Attorney, Mr. Benno left government service to work for a premier civil litigation law firm where he tried civil cases and managed a caseload that focused on civil rights matters in state and federal court.
In 2009, Mr. Benno opened his own law practice, which focused on civil rights cases in state and federal court, criminal defense, and appellate litigation.
In addition to an active trial practice, Mr. Benno has briefed and argued criminal and civil appeals in the First, Second, Third, and Fourth Departments of the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, the New York State Court of Appeals, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
In 2010, Mr. Benno argued People v. Mothersell in the New York State Court of Appeals, New York State’s highest tribunal. That case, which challenged the constitutionality of the City of Syracuse’s usage of “all persons present” search warrants, resulted in a unanimous reversal of the client’s criminal conviction and the dismissal of his indictment, and changed the landscape of criminal law practice in New York State. More recently, Mr. Benno was lead counsel in Bailey v. Pataki, a Section 1983 civil rights action against former New York State Governor George Pataki and several members of his administration for creating and implementing an unconstitutional civil commitment policy for a class of prisoners. Mr. Benno briefed and argued the interlocutory appeal in that case to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. He won that appeal, and thereafter tried the case in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. After a three and a half week trial, the jury found a top member of Gov. Pataki’s administration liable for violating the plaintiffs’ constitutional rights.
From 2006 through 2012, Mr. Benno was an adjunct professor at New York Law School, where he taught Legal Reasoning and Writing and Written and Oral Advocacy.
Mr. Benno is admitted to the New York and Connecticut state bars, and is admitted to practice in the federal courts of the Southern, Eastern, Western, and Northern Districts of New York as well as the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the United States Supreme Court.
He serves on the Civil Rights and Liberties Committee of the New York County Lawyers Association, and is a member of the Civil Rights Section of the American Association of Justice. Mr. Benno is also a member of the National Police Accountability Project, the New York City Policing Roundtable, the First Amendment Lawyers Association, the New York State Trial Lawyers Association, the New York State Academy of Trial Lawyers, and the Brooklyn Bar Association.
Mr. Benno also is a member of the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the New York State Defenders Association. He is a member of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) Legal Committee.
In 2012 and again in 2013, Mr. Benno was selected to the Super Lawyers Rising Stars list as one of the top up‐and‐coming attorneys in the metro-New York area in the areas of First Amendment and civil rights law. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state receive this honor.
In 2013 and 2014, Mr. Benno was also selected by the National Trial Lawyers for inclusion in the Top 100 trial attorneys in New York State in the area of criminal law. This is an invitation-only organization composed of the premier trial lawyers from each state in the nation who meet stringent qualifications. Selection is based on a thorough multi-phase process which includes peer nominations combined with third-party research. In 2014, Mr. Benno was also selected for inclusion in the National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40.
Mr. Benno is rated 10.0, the highest rating given, by the online lawyer rating service Avvo.com.
Mr. Benno received his B.A. degree with honors from Johns Hopkins University, and his J.D. from Cornell Law School. While at Cornell Law School, Mr. Benno received recognition for his superior litigation abilities and was a member of the prestigious Moot Court Board.
This course was excellent. The presenter was well informed and passed on that information extremely well and kept me captivated. Great Job Ameer!
Outstanding! Thank you
Clear and well spoken.
Very good organization.
Clear explanation of the law.
so many regulations to bring one of these causes of actions. Well presented. Good review.
Excellent program and presentation!
Excellent course material.
always a great presenter excellent info
Excellent, clear presentation.
Great perspective and outstanding presentation.
One of the better Lawline courses. I would urge newer lawyers in rural jurisdictions to familiarize yourself with these rules . Not only to sue but to advise your local agency. on how to comply with the law, so as to get the best and fairest and just results.
great materials with cases listed
Excellent overview of federal claims, including a 1983 action in which I prepared and litigated.
Terrific course. Great speaker.
The course was very informative and a good presentation of the general outline of causes of action against govt. entities
Very interesting presentation.
An excellent overview.
Excellent presentation. Thank You........
I Liked the presentation. Well done.
Outstanding presentation. Clear and concise.
Clear, concise speaker...
Wonderful -- one of the best and most succinct presentations on a very difficult topic that I've seen.
Thorough and informative. Well-organized and well-presented.
Again, I'm appreciating the two presenter format!
The written materials were excellent! Very good presentation.
Excellent coverage of topic! Excellent pace, handouts. Exceptional course.
A plus presentation and slide detail was fabulous
Helpful and informative.
This was a very effective introduction to the covered material. The presenter was excellent.
v interesting, thank you
Excellent in every sense. A nice summary of federal criminal law generally too.
Good course, not my area of practice. Still interesting.
I have several of these cases and Ameer seemed to know what he was talking about. did learn a few things which is scary since I should have known them already!
Not in my area of practice, but something I was curious about.
He is an excellent presenter and always makes his program interesting and informative.
This one was pretty interesting -
Informative good speaker.
Excellent presenter and materials.
This CLE was well-informed as to the law, but is also highly relevant; as a criminal defense attorney, it still surprises just how many cases of police brutality exist. Thus, the only addition I might suggest for this CLE would be more discussion of real cases and how these laws were applied to those instances of police brutality (and/or alleged instances of police brutality).
Very good presenter. The information was presented in a very coherent fashion.
Very good presentation
Well organized lecture -- very informative.
Awesome overview. Hit all the important areas and issues. Great checklist lecture because of the clear explanations. Impressive, concise, articulate. Did I say it was fantastic?
Very good job on subject matter and delivery.
Great content. Great Speaker
Great primer course.
Very good in all respects.
I love Lawline!
Very good overview in order to start your research on this subject matter.
Great presentation. Highly effective for the 1 hour limit.
This is a well-organized, dynamic presentation. The speaker is knowledgeable and shares his topic with energy and style. Thanks for an excellent course.
speaker is very knowledgeable
Very well done. Concise, informative, contextual.
interesting presentation - engaging presenter
this guy speaks well
Very Professional Presentation
speaker very good and materials very comprehensive too
A LOT of material here. Good overview.
He is great with his presentation.
It was excellent.
Good lecturer, easy to understand.
Good (and very broad) overview.
One of the best presentations and written material on any CLE I have ever taken.
Very comprehensive and informative. And sadly very relevant in this day and age.
This was one of the better courses.
very clear/informative on distinguishing types of actions available. Great materials.
Very concise and to he point!
Instructor was very knowledgeable and well-prepared.
Another great course and instructor. Presented at the appropriate level and quite clear.
One of the best on-line courses I have ever taken. Great presentation and materials.
He made the most of the time given! Very good presentation.
This was one of the best Lawline presentations I've seen.
Very, very impressed with both Lawline and with the contents of Mr. Benno's presentation. Just excellent.
well prepared speaker clear concise presentation
Very informative presentation!
This guy was outstanding. Great information in a great presentation.
Another wonderful Lawline course! This presenter was effective, informative and efficient given the time constraints!
Good introductions to Federal claims.
really like this lecturer
I would like to see this expanded to 2 hours.
Very clear discussion and pointing out pitfalls and how federal law interacts with respective state laws.
I was very pleased with this course. Wish it was longer and more in depth as to legal strategy.
He was a good presenter.
An important topic for the times to be aware of and this course brings that to the forefront.
Extremely informative and practical.
Instructor was absolutely great!!!
Excellent speaker. One of the best.
Excellent seminar. Strong presentation.
I suggest this program be expanded to 2 hours. There's a lot of material.
The presenter was clear and concise.
Excellent written materials with citations
Good course. Would recommend.
His courses are consistently superb. A wonderful presenter.
Great written material. Thanks.
This guy was fantastic! Great course!
Super speaker who, in a very short period of time, managed to cast considerable light on the who, what, when, and where regarding the subject matter of his presentation.
Very clear explanations.
Excellent presentation. The speaker was extremely knowledgeable about the subject matter and presented the materials in a clear and concise manner.
Speaker was excellent. Enjoyed this alot.
Great speaker. Very informative lecture.
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