Attorneys hint at massive lawsuit against Denver for police department’s response to summer protests

The City Attorney’s Office received 51 claims Tuesday.

Protesters and police clashed on the second night of protests in downtown Denver during demonstrations over the death of George Floyd on Friday, May 29, 2020. (Hart Van Denburg/CPR)

Protesters and police clashed on the second night of protests in downtown Denver during demonstrations over the death of George Floyd on Friday, May 29, 2020. (Hart Van Denburg/CPR)

staff photos

The city government on Tuesday received a stack of 51 legal claims alleging misconduct among police officers during this summer’s protests against racial injustice and police brutality.

The Denver City Attorney’s Office confirmed that the office received the “notices of claim,” first reported by 9News. According to the news report, “excessive force and illegal arrests” are the overall theme of the claims, which were filed by Baumgartner Law.

Filing these claims is typically the first step toward pursuing a lawsuit against the city government. City attorneys will review them to see if they have merit and go from there, said Ryan Luby, spokesman for the City Attorney’s Office. Sometimes the claims result in a settlement from the city, paid with taxpayer dollars. Other times they go to court.

Until Tuesday, claims against the police department had been trickling in since the violent protests of this summer. One man claimed the police blinded him, for example. Another man claimed an officer violated him with a baton in his anus.

The stack of claims comes ahead of a lengthy report, expected to be released in December, by the Office of the Independent Monitor on the department’s response to protests.

Denverite has not been able to reach the attorney who filed the claims.

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