Suit Claims Forcing Emotionally Disturbed Person to go to Hospital is a Civil Rights Violation

A man with psychological problems who was forcibly taken to the hospital on two occasions in 2021, has filed suit against NYPD, FDNY and the city’s hospital system claiming violations of his Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Ali Moore claims that he was “wrongfully arrested, seized, harassed, threatened, assaulted and battered, detained, abused, set out to public ridicule, and made to suffer injury to his good name, his personage, and his mental state of mind, without reason, legal basis, or justification” by city officials.

The suit was filed in US District Court for the Southern District of New York. Here are some of the factual allegations:

  • Plaintiff MOORE was 28 years old at the time of incident. Plaintiff MOORE has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
  • Prior to the underlying incident hereof, Defendants 1-10 [NYPD police Officers], 11-20 [New York City Housing Authority personnel], 21-30 [FDNY Fire and EMS personnel], 31-40 [New York City Health & Hospital employees] and 41-50 [Harlem Hospital employees] had previously responded to calls involving Plaintiff and were aware of his mental health conditions.
  • On October 1, 2021 and October 5, 2021, Defendant [police officers] violated existing policies when they encountered Plaintiff MOORE.
  • These violations were a direct result of the Individual Defendants’ and the City’s deliberate indifference to individuals deemed emotionally disturbed persons (hereinafter, “EDP” or “EDPs”).
  • Prior to and at the time of the encounter, Plaintiff MOORE was identified by Defendant [police officers] as a possible EDP.
  • As such, Defendant [police officers] were required to follow certain rules and regulations of the NYPD, some of which, on information, are outlined in the NYPD’s departmental policies and which required Defendants to employ particular methods and to otherwise use reasonable care in their treatment of Plaintiff MOORE.
  • Despite the foregoing, Defendant [police officers] failed to follow departmental policies and other generally accepted standards.
  • Instead, they forced a physical confrontation, used excessive force, and were otherwise wantonly reckless in the manner in which they treated Plaintiff MOORE, in complete disregard for his wellbeing and safety and, in so doing, caused serious and severe injuries to Plaintiff MOORE.
  • Defendant [police officers] knew of Plaintiff MOORE’S diagnosis and failed to follow NYPD protocol.
  • Despite this knowledge of Plaintiff MOORE’S condition, Defendant [police officers] deliberately and intentionally disregarded the directives for dealing with alleged EDPs set out in NYPD’s policies.
  • As a direct and proximate result of their deliberate disregard of NYPD policies and procedures, Plaintiff MOORE sustained severe and serious injuries.

Here is a copy of the complaint:

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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