Civil Rights

//Civil Rights

Our civil rights attorneys handle civil rights violation cases involving wrongful conviction, sexual harassment or assault, rights of inmates in prisons or jails and discrimination.

Chicago Police Department Ordered to Release Nearly 50 Years of Complaint Files

Ruling that the Chicago Police Department had failed to comply with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, Cook County Judge Alison Conlon has given the Department until the end of 2020 to hand over nearly a half-century’s worth of documents. The documents—unreleased files pertaining to allegations of police misconduct from 1967 to 2015—were ordered in a [...]

2020-03-10T10:24:54-05:00By |Categories: Civil Rights|Tags: |0 Comments

G&E Civil Rights Attorney Karyn Bass Ehler Named to Illinois Super Lawyers 2020

G&E’s Karyn Bass Ehler, Senior Counsel and head of the firm’s Civil Rights practice, has been selected for inclusion to Super Lawyers’ list of 2020 Top Rated Civil Rights Lawyers in Chicago, IL. The list recognizes only 5% of attorneys in each state. Ms. Bass Ehler was previously included among Super Lawyers’ list of Rising Stars for four [...]

2020-03-10T10:10:49-05:00By |Categories: Civil Rights|Tags: |0 Comments

Women’s Bar Association of Illinois Features G&E’s Karyn Bass Ehler

The Women’s Bar Association of Illinois spotlights Karyn Bass Ehler, head of the firm’s Civil Rights practice group, in its Member Monday feature. Ms. Bass Ehler litigates matters involving wrongful convictions, excessive force and other Section 1983 claims, sexual harassment or assault, and discrimination, among other egregious civil rights violations. An “advocate for the importance of [...]

2020-03-10T10:28:13-05:00By |Categories: Civil Rights|0 Comments

Ruling Upheld to Block U.S. Air Force from Discharging HIV-Positive Service Members

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has upheld an injunction barring the U.S. Air Force from discharging two HIV-positive airmen. The lawsuit stems from a Defense Department policy that forbids HIV-positive service members from deploying outside the United States without a waiver. In February 2018, the Trump administration elaborated upon the rule, [...]

2020-03-10T10:29:44-05:00By |Categories: Civil Rights|Tags: |0 Comments

Supreme Court to Examine Religious Organization Exemption from Discrimination Lawsuits

In reviewing two separate lawsuits concerning teachers at religion-based schools, the U.S. Supreme Court will decide the extent that religious groups can avoid discrimination lawsuits filed against them by their employees. A legal doctrine known as the “ministerial exception” is intended to protect the freedom of religion by exempting religious institutions from anti-discrimination laws in hiring [...]

Man Exonerated After More than 30 Years in Jail

More than 30 years after the murder conviction of Jack Sagin, he was exonerated and released from prison in October 2019. Using evidence based on testimony from a jailhouse informant, a jury found Sagin guilty of murdering a 40-year old California woman in 1986. Sagin won the right to conduct DNA testing in 2009, which determined [...]

$700,000 Awarded to Woman Who Was a Target of Online Hate Crimes

In a 2019 landmark decision, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia awarded over $700,000 in damages and attorneys’ fees to an African American woman threatened and harassed on social media by white supremacists. Filed by the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, pro bono counsel, and the Washington Lawyers’ Committee, plaintiff Taylor Dumpson’s [...]

2019’s Big Civil Rights Cases

The second-half of 2019 brought a number of significant decisions impacting plaintiffs who had their civil rights violated. In July of 2019, the Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit issued a decision surrounding juvenile resentencing. The ruling clarified that, when resentencing men and women who received juvenile life without parole sentences, the offender’s youthful (i.e., [...]

2020-03-10T10:31:49-05:00By |Categories: Civil Rights|Tags: |0 Comments

Chicago Man Granted New Trial after Appeals Court Affirms Coerced Murder Confession

In a recent Illinois Appellate Court decision, Jackie Wilson’s 1982 conviction of armed robbery and murder was overturned, granting him a new trial. After what resulted in the “biggest manhunt in Chicago’s history,” Wilson maintained that two police detectives who interrogated him, beat and tortured him into confessing to the crimes. In 2018, after 36 years [...]

What Does It Mean to Be Exonerated?

Wrongful imprisonment is a fact of life in the American justice system. Research has uncovered some common causes of wrongful conviction. These causes include: Improper Forensics: Forensic science techniques that lack scientific validation or reliability. Eyewitness Misidentification: While eyewitness testimony is widely trusted in courtroom settings, the human memory is not infallible. False and coerced confessions [...]