Guam – The Guam Attorney General is seeking dismissal of the remaining claims filed by East-West Rental owner James Adkins against the Guam Police Department.
Adkins originally filed a multi-million dollar civil rights lawsuit against GPD, then Police Chief Paul Suba and 2 officers. But Court rulings have whittled down the complaint to just the 2 officers involved in Adkins arrest.
Adkins lawsuit stems from an incident on October 4th of last year when Officers D.B. Anciano and Serafino Artui arrested Adkins because he used his cell phone to take photographs of a car accident that they were investigating in his Tamuning neighborhood.
The 2 officers told Adkins to stop, get out of his car and they demanded his cell phone. When Adkins refused, he was handcuffed, booked , fingerprinted, and photographed and finally released after being detained and imprisoned for about four hours.
The last ruling in the case from District Court Judge Franics Tydingco-Gatewood granted “qualified immunity” to the 2 GPD officers in their official capacity, but she adopted a recommendation from Magistrates Judge Joaquin Manibusan to let the complaint stand against the officers in their individual capacities.
Monday, the Guam Attorney General filed a motion for Judgement on the Pleadings seeking dismissal of the remaining complaints against the 2 officers.
On the key question of whether Adkins’ constitutional rights were violated, Assistant Attorney General Robert Weinberg argues that:
“In view of the court’s finding that … “(i)t would not have been clear to a reasonable officer in the Defendants’ position that prohibiting the Plaintiff from taking photos at an accident scene would violate the Plaintiff’s First Amendment rights – Mr. Adkins will be unable to demonstrate that it was constitutionally unreasonable for him to be stopped.”