by Mindy Aguon
Guam - The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of prominent businessman James Adkins finding that police did not have a valid reason to stop, detain or arrest him for taking photos of a car crash with his cell phone. Adkins had sued two police officers and former police chief Paul Suba, alleging violations of his civil and 1st Amendment rights.
The 9th Circuit upheld that police did not have qualified immunity from liability. Additionally, the court found that Adkins failed to adequately plead a claim against Suba but remanded the case for an amended complaint. Adkins was pleased with the ruling saying "we have a right not to be stopped or arrested when we exercise our 1st Amendment rights and we have a right not to be stopped or arrested or have our property seized without probable cause as required by the 4th Amendment."