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CA8 on Equal Protection: Parada v. Anoka County

December 01, 2022 (1 min read)

Parada v. Anoka County

"The Anoka County Jail referred every detainee born outside the United States, including Myriam Parada, to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The district court determined that this policy violates the Equal Protection Clause, and a jury awarded her $30,000 on a false-imprisonment theory. We affirm. ... The jury awarded her $30,000 for false imprisonment but gave her only one dollar for the constitutional violation. Despite getting less than she wanted on the federal claim, she received a sizable attorney-fee award totaling $248,218.13. ... The district court’s conclusion was correct: Anoka County’s policy is a classic example of national-origin discrimination. On its face, it treats people differently depending on where they were born. ... The bigger problem, however, is Anoka County’s scattershot approach to accomplishing its interest. By its own statistics, more than half of the foreign-born individuals it referred to ICE turned out to be American citizens."

[Hats off to Alain Baudry, Ian Bratlie (argued), Amanda Cefalu, Claire Diegel, Teresa Nelson and Matthew Veenstra!]