Federal appeals court rules cops who handcuffed 10-year-old girl for drawing offensive picture must face excessive force lawsuit

A teen is seen in handcuffs in this April 11, 2010 photo (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio).

A federal appeals court ruled that three Honolulu police officers are not immune from a lawsuit filed on behalf of a 10-year-old girl who was handcuffed and arrested at school for allegedly drawing an offensive and violent picture of another student.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an unpublished opinion in which it said the officers were not entitled to qualified immunity because it was unreasonable for officers to think it necessary to use handcuffs to transport a 10-year-old to the police station. The panel was made up of U.S. Circuit Judges Consuelo Callahan, a George W. Bush appointee, Andrew D. Hurwitz, a Barack Obama appointee, and Holly A. Thomas, a Joe Biden appointee.

Tamara Taylor and her daughter, identified in pleadings as “N.B.”, sued the City of Honolulu and the Hawaii Department of Education for false arrest, use of excessive force, and racial and disability discrimination after police handcuffed and arrested a 10-year-old Black girl who drew an offensive picture.

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