After briefing and oral arguments made on behalf of the family of Ashley Browder, who was tragically killed in a traffic collision with former Albuquerque Police Sergeant Adam Casaus, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion which held the complaint filed on the Browder family’s behalf by BKB Law contained allegations sufficient to constitute violation of Ashley Browder’s constitutional rights. The opinion of the Court was issued on June 2, 2015, and affirmed the decision originally issued by the Honorable Judge Robert Brack in Federal District Court. The 10th Circuit’s opinion can be read here:
BKB Law stated in its complaint on behalf of the Browders that Sergeant Casaus had no legitimate law enforcement justification for speeding through a red light and crashing into the vehicle driven by Lindsay Browder and in which Ashley Browder was a passenger and therefore had violated the constitutional rights of the Browder sisters. Casaus and the City of Albuquerque had argued that Casaus had not violated the Browders’ rights, and that even if he had he was entitled to qualified immunity. A panel of three judges for the 10th Circuit heard oral argument in March, and then rejected both arguments in its opinion issued on June 2. The case has been remanded to Federal District Court for resumption of litigation of the Browders’ claims.
Casaus was off-duty in his APD SUV, speeding home down Paseo de Norte in February 2013, when he blew through an intersection and slammed into Ashley and Lindsay Browder’s Honda. Ashley, 21, died in the crash; Lindsay was seriously injured. Investigators said Casaus had a red light when he spend through the intersection. Casaus claimed he was chasing a dangerous driver. There was no evidence to back up the story.