Stanley v. Scott
A prosecutor is entitled to absolute immunity in connection with a civil-rights suit that requests damages for his conduct as a legal advocate for the government. The pro se plaintiff, Steven Stanley, sued the defendant prosecutor, State's Attorney Adam Scott, alleging that Scott spoke to a judge ex parte during Stanley's trial, when Stanley was away from the courtroom, and asked that the court dismiss Scott's key witness. Stanley's complaint requested that the court award damages for emotional distress. "A prosecutor," wrote the court, "is protected by absolute immunity from a [42 United States Code §1983] action seeking damages for virtually all acts, regardless of motivation, associated with his function as an advocate." The court denied Stanley's request for damages. The court dismissed Stanley's request for remedies for alleged due-process violations. Any alleged violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct did not result in a legal cause of action, and the court dismissed Stanley's request that the court take away State's Attorney Scott's license to practice law, without prejudice to Stanley filing a grievance complaint with the Statewide Grievance Committee.