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|Federal judge rules Atlanta Eagle lawsuit to be tried in Fulton Superior Court|
|by Dyana Bagby|
|January 20, 2012 15:18|
An Atlanta Eagle lawsuit against the city will be tried in Fulton County Superior Court after a federal judge ruled against the city of Atlanta's motion to move the case to federal court.
First reported by Jim Burress at WABE, Senior U.S. District Judge Robert Vining Jr. ruled that the city's amended motion to remand the case to federal court was an "untimely attempt to cure a procedural defect" and "concludes that the original notice of removal was deficient."
Vining also said the city's "tortured interpretation" of the motion to remand to federal court would render a statute involving procedure for removal was "meaningless, which this court is unwilling to do."
The city also filed its motion 48 days after it was was served with the amended lawsuit that added an additional plaintiff , violating the 30-day period such motions are to be made in the court system, Vining noted.
Ten men who were in the Midtown gay bar the Atlanta Eagle when it was raided by the Atlanta Police Department in 2009 filed suit in September in Fulton Superior Court alleging their constitutional rights were violated when police searched and detained them.
The city settled a federal civil lawsuit for $1.025 million with Atlanta Eagle patrons who filed the first lawsuit to come from the police raid. Another lawsuit, filed by employees of the bar, was settled by the city for $120,000.
Several officers were also fired after internal investigations of the raid revealed officers did violate the constitutional rights of patrons in the bar that night.
The city has denied it violated the constitutional rights of the plaintiffs who filed suit in Fulton Superior Court.
Another lawsuit, by former Atlanta Eagle bartender Chris Lopez, is filed in federal court and is pending.
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