The Supreme Court on Monday ruled for an Arizona police officer who shot a woman outside her home in Tucson. The court’s decision was unsigned and issued without full briefing and oral argument, an indication that the majority found the case to be easy.
In an impassioned dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said the majority had gone badly astray, the New York Times reports.
The case dated to 2010 and involved the shooting of a woman armed with a knife.
She survived and sued the officer for using excessive force. The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, allowed the case to proceed.
The Supreme Court reversed that ruling, saying that Officer Kisela was entitled to qualified immunity, a doctrine that shields officials from suits over violations of constitutional rights that were not clearly established at the time of the conduct in question.