Daniel Patterson, Ex-Lawmaker, Files Lawsuit Claiming Legislative Immunity Was Ignored

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old-capitol-top.jpg
Dave Newman via Flickr
The old Arizona State Capitol building.


Former state lawmaker Daniel Patterson claims in a federal lawsuit that his civil rights were violated when he was served with restraining orders and charged with domestic-violence crimes last year.

Patterson, a Democrat, claims the Pima County Sheriff's Office and the Tucson City Attorney ignored his legislative immunity, which he claims should have prevented him from being arrested, or served with restraining orders, in spats with both his then-girlfriend and ex-wife.

See also:
-Daniel Patterson Calls it Quits, Resigns From House

The immunity provision outlined in the Arizona Constitution is as follows:
6. Privilege from arrest; civil process
Section 6. Members of the legislature shall be privileged from arrest in all cases except treason, felony, and breach of the peace, and they shall not be subject to any civil process during the session of the legislature, nor for fifteen days next before the commencement of each session.
Prosecutors argued at the time that Patterson wasn't actually arrested, and that it was indeed a "breach of the peace."

Patterson was acquitted of the charges anyway, after his then-girlfriend retracted her claims.

"As a result of the criminal prosecution, and the negative publicity generated by the prosecution, Plaintiff's employment prospects were negatively impacted and Plaintiff has suffered severe financial hardship," the lawsuit alleges. "Since this prosecution and the negative publicity surrounding this prosecution, Plaintiff has been unable to find employment in the area of politics or public policy."

The lawsuit also states that Patterson was forced to resign from the House of Representatives "[i]n light of the unfavorable publicity caused by this unfounded prosecution . . ."

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7 comments
getmeouttahere
getmeouttahere

Daniel Patterson: Arizona's version of Rob Ford.

Oh and the poor baby is upset because he is "unable to find employment in the area of politics or public policy?" Well Boo-Fucking-Hoo. Welcome to Arizona's crap-tastic low-wage, dead-end, no-benefit dirt-poor economy, Mr Patterson. Most of us here can't find the kind of jobs we want. Join the fucking club. 

Oh by the way, I hear Wal-Mart is hiring....you might try McDonalds too. 


Tyburn Gallows
Tyburn Gallows

Who else remembers his anti-political days in the anti-glob movement? I sure do. Kinda reminds me of Sinema with the anti-war movement.

Flyer9753
Flyer9753 topcommenter

Legislative Immunity needs to be ended altogether, along with the immunity that has been given to the entire Law Enforcement establishment from cops to judges

Then maybe "We the People" will actually get some actual representation.

yourproductsucks2
yourproductsucks2 topcommenter

for ignorant folks like yourself, legislative immunity has a place and does not mean legislators are immune from prosecution. any crimes they commit they will have to answer to, they just can't be held during legislative sessions. this is to protect their ability to vote and not be hindered by alleged minor offenses.... law enforcement has no immunity neither do judges.

Flyer9753
Flyer9753 topcommenter

@yourproductsucks2 

And anyone should listen to the person (you) who can't even count days/months or figure out a calendar why?? 

Don't bother answering.. it'll just be more bullshit from the short bus helmet rider (you)

yourproductsucks2
yourproductsucks2 topcommenter

are you disagreeing what legislative immunity is?

there you go again telling others what to do.

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