Supreme Court Takes on Reasonable Force Case

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The Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC.
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On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a case exploring the use of excessive force in the search for a felony suspect.

Back in 2010, two Los Angeles sheriff's deputies entered a wooden shack in the backyard of a residential property without a warrant, occupied by Angel Mendez and his then-girlfriend Jennifer Lynn Garcia. After Mendez sat up, authorities noticed that he put his hand on a BB gun, which he used to ward off pests. The deputies proceeded to fire several rounds, leaving the couple severely injured. 

This case brings up a multitude of issues about search and seizure, the right to bear arms, and whether the officers' actions provoked a violent response.

Ryan Lockman, a civil rights attorney at Mark B. Frost & Associates in Philadelphia, and writer for the Lock Law Blog, analyzes the case.