On Christmas night in 2006, three police officers in Hooper Bay, a town on Alaska’s western coast, fired their Tasers into Thomas Olson about 15 times within 90 seconds. Mr. Olson sued the police officers and Hooper Bay, asserting this excessive use of force violated his rights. The ACLU of Alaska wrote an amicus curiae, or “friend of the court,” brief on his behalf.
Status: A Superior Court judge cleared the police officers of wrongdoing, but an appeal to the Alaska Supreme Court resulted in a jury trial that found the officers had used excessive force and awarded Mr. Olson $500,000. That decision was overturned and the case is currently before the Alaska Supreme Court again.