Daniels v. Taylor

Brief Of Amici Curiae American Civil Liberties Union, Bronx Defenders, Cato Institute, Center for Appellate Litigation, Center on The Administration of Criminal Law at New York University School Of Law, Legal Aid Society, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, National Police Accountability Project, New York Civil Liberties Union, New York State Chief Defenders Association, New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and Office of the Appellate Defender Supporting Reversal.

Brief filed: 07/31/2020


Daniels v. Taylor

2nd Circuit Court of Appeals; Case No. 20-1331

Prior Decision

Decision below 443 F.Supp.3d 471 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 11, 2020)


Evidence fabrication is a serious and pervasive problem, and its innocent victims often do not obtain an “indication of innocence.” Requiring indicia of innocence for civil rights claims of evidence fabrication is unfair and unworkable. McDonough does not affect the substantive difference between malicious prosecution claims and fabrication claims, which address corruption of the criminal process regardless of probable cause. The District Courts’ rule would be unjust, unfair, and unworkable. The District Courts’ rule undermines the core accountability function of § 1983 in cases of very serious misconduct. The District Court’s rule would harmfully exacerbate the existing power imbalance against criminal defendants. The District Courts’ rule is not administrable and will yield arbitrary results.


David A. Lebowitz and Douglas E. Lieb, Kaufman Lieb Lebowitz Frick LLP, New York, NY; Joshua L. Dratel and Lindsay A. Lewis, NACDL, New York, NY.

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