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MI House Dems Propose Stripping Qualified Immunity For ‘Bad Actor’ Police

Lansing Capitol by Joe Dearman is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Proposed legislation in the Michigan House would deny legal immunity to police who act with unreasonable force.

Law enforcement officers are protected by a provision known as qualified immunity.  That means they’re shielded from civil liability for serious injury or death if their actions fall within the scope of their official duties.  The proposal from four members of the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus would strip that protection from police who exert unjustified violence.

State Representative Cynthia A. Johnson is a Democrat from Detroit. “It puts the officer on notice that you are going to be held responsible and not just get a pass because of your bad actions.”

Johnson says a future bill might including bonding Michigan police officers, which would require them to purchase their own personal liability insurance.