September 27, 2002 Pershing Park Mass Arrest Class Action Settlement
The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund is pleased to announce that the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has granted preliminary approval to the class action settlement in Barham, et al. v. Ramsey, et al., relating to the September 27, 2002 mass arrest of nearly 400 people in Pershing Park in Washington, D.C. The claims period for this settlement is now open.
After seven years of hard-fought litigation by PCJF attorneys, this sets in motion the process for class members to receive up to $18,000 each in compensation for their claims. Arrestees included protestors, passers-by, tourists, journalists and legal observers. Many of those arrested were trapped and surrounded by police in the park, moved onto mass arrest busses, were in custody including overnight, and were restrained wrist-to-ankle in painful stress and duress positions.
In addition to monetary payments, the arrest of class members will be expunged; each arrestee who participates in the settlement will receive a court order declaring his or her arrest to be legally null and void. There is also substantial equitable relief, changes in the law and to police policies and practices that have been achieved in the course of the litigation.
The deadline for submitting the Proof of Claim form requires that it be postmarked by no later than July 15, 2010. Please go to www.PershingParkSettlement.com for additional information.
Please re-post this email to e-mail lists, web sites, Facebook pages or organizations where it may be viewed by potential class members. You can use the buttons below to forward this email or post it to Facebook or Twitter. In addition to notices being mailed to persons who may have been arrested based on information in arrest records, there will also be additional publication notifying class members in various media outlets.
The class is "all persons who were arrested in Pershing Park in the District of Columbia on September 27, 2002." There were protest-related arrests elsewhere on September 27, 2002 that are the subject of other suits. This settlement pertains only to the Pershing Park arrests.
If you believe you are a member of the class and wish to seek payment under the settlement, do not delay in submitting your Proof of Claim. Do not wait until you can include hard-to-find arrest paperwork.
Even if you need time to locate any arrest related records or paperwork, you should file your Proof of Claim without delay. The first way the Class Administrator will try to confirm your eligibility is by comparing your name/contact information to records provided by law enforcement in litigation or to the Administrator. In other words, if your arrest can be matched or confirmed against law enforcement records, there will be no need to send in any arrest related documentation. If a match is made, the Administrator will send you a letter advising so. If not, the Administrator will send you a letter requesting additional information or paperwork.
You can send in your Proof of Claim form immediately with copies of any arrest related paperwork or things (such as a property bag or ID bracelet) that are readily available. Continue to gather any related records, in case they are needed or requested.
The official web site, established by the Class Administrator, is at www.PershingParkSettlement.com. Additional materials are available there, and answers to frequently asked questions will be posted there as questions are presented to the Administrator. If you have questions, please first read the Notice to Class Members, which is in Q & A format and answers many important questions about the settlement and the process. The Class Administrator has also set up a toll free number, 1-877-678-0736 in case you have questions that are not answered in the notice or on the web site.
Please note that if you were arrested on April 15, 2000 in Washington, D.C., that is subject to a different class action settlement. Information for the April 15, 2000 settlement is at BeckerSettlement.com with an upcoming claims deadline of May 17, 2010.