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Michigan Supreme Court overturns lower court; holds that even gross negligence by one cop in shooting another during attempted arrest is not actionable

It will surprise no one who is paying attention that another injury claimant's claim was summarily dismissed by Michigan's Supreme Court.  Mike Lego, a police officer, was shot by Jake Liss, another police officer, during the attempted apprehension of an armed-robbery suspect.  He sued Liss, arguing that Liss' discharge of his weapon constituted gross negligence and that therefore Liss didn't enjoy governmental immunity for his actions.  Liss' attorneys argued that Lego's injury claim was barred by Michigan's "firefighter's rule" which grants immunity for any injury that "arises from the normal, inherent, and foreseeable risks" associated with police work and firefighting.

The Court of Appeals had held that Liss wasn't entitled to summary disposition because if Lego could prove that Liss acted in disregard of his training and that he violated numerous safety procedures, his wounding of Lego would not be an "inherent, foreseeable" risk.  The high court held that even if Lego proved gross negligence by Liss, his gunshot injuries would still be a "foreseeable" risk of police work and therefore not actionable.

Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
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