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Acting on a tip, police officers stake out an employment office. About 8:30 P.M., two figures appear at the back door and force the lock. Then they come in, the police confront them with guns drawn, warning: "Stop, Police!" One man freezes with his hands over his head; the other swings a crowbar at both officers, knocking a gun from one policeman's hand. The officers open fire-one shooting three shots, the other all six. The suspect is struck by four bullets, and is killed. The suspect's mother sues the officers and the city for a violation of her son's constitutional rights, claiming excessive use of force under the Civil Rights Act (42 U.S.C. section 1983) and asks for one hundred thousand dollars in damages.

A woman living outside the city limits organizes a baseball team with her friends and neighbors and applies to the city for a permit to use the city ball diamonds. The city denies her request on the basis of a policy which allocates the use of the play fields according to prior practice and residency. The woman sues, claiming a denial of equal protection on the grounds of sex and residency discrimination under 42 U.S.C. section 1983 and the fourteenth amendment.


Patricia W. Morrison is an Assistant City Solicitor, City of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Counsel for the Cincinnati Board of Education. B.A., Wellesley College, 1962; M.A.T., Harvard University, 1963; M.A., University of Cincinnati, 1971; J.D., University of Cincinnati, 1976.

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