Two former Shelby, Mississippi, police officers who had filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against department and town officials — only to see it dismissed in court — caught a second chance this week after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to reinstate the case.
According to the Associated Press, the two officers allege that they were fired by the department after "refusing to ignore an alderman's criminal activity." They subsequently filed a wrongful termination suit against the town, charging that their constitutional rights had been violated and were entitled to sue over it, as per Section 1983 of the U.S. Code. When the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans ruled in favor of Shelby, that seemed to be the end of the case.
But after an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, the nation's highest court ruled that the wrongful termination complaint was still valid and ordered the case reinstated.
"The [Circuit Court Judge] said the lawsuit should be dismissed because the officers failed to prove that a federal right was violated and that the alleged violation was a proximate or legal cause of the damages they allegedly suffered," writes local news publication The Clarion-Ledger. "The U.S. Supreme Court disagreed, finding that the officers offered facts sufficient to show that their claim had plausibility […] [and had] informed the city of factual basis for their complaint and didn't need to do anything else to succeed against a motion for dismissal."
It was not disclosed when a new trial date would be set, or the level of damages that the plaintiffs were seeking.
If you believe you have ever lost a job unfairly, contact The Meyers Law Firm. Our Kansas City-based wrongful termination lawyers can expertly assess your case and fight for any compensation you may be owed.