Epstein Becker Green Obtains Dismissal of Major Claims in ‘Excessive Force’ Suit

March 31, 2010

Epstein Becker Green's litigation team obtained a dismissal of the major claims in an "excessive force" lawsuit brought in federal court by a New York Post newspaper photographer against a major hospital after the reporter was arrested by special patrolmen employed by the hospital. The photographer refused an order to leave the hospital's property (the steps leading to a hospital building) where he was waiting to photograph a celebrity who was planning to visit his brother, a patient. The Court held that, because the First Amendment did not give the photographer the right to enter private property, the order to leave was valid. When he refused, the officers had the right to exercise their state-granted power to arrest him for trespass and resisting arrest. The Court also determined based on video footage captured by several surveillance cameras and the photographer's own audio recording of the incident that there was no genuine issue of material fact and that the officers as a matter of law did not use excessive force, even though the photographer sustained a shoulder injury. Kalfus v. The New York and Presbyterian Hospital, et al., 07 Civ 11455(DAB) (3/31/10).

The Epstein Becker Green team representing the client-hospital included New York Litigation attorney Kenneth J. Kelly.