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Griffin-Jones Settlement Ignites San Diego Police Department Policy Change

SAN DIEGO – Mintz, alongside the ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties, Community Advocates for Just and Moral Governance, and Brody McBride Law, successfully secured a settlement for client Christina Griffin-Jones with the City of San Diego in a federal lawsuit challenging the San Diego Police Department’s (SDPD) cell phone seizure practices, and their prolonged seizure of Griffin-Jones’s cell phone.

At the heart of the dispute was the seizure of Griffin-Jones’ cell phone by San Diego police officers when she was arrested during an anti-police violence demonstration on September 23, 2020. Although she was released the following day, SDPD refused to return her phone for months.

As part of the settlement, the City of San Diego agreed to implement a new policy requiring officers to seek and obtain a warrant to hold or search any phone they seize, or to return the phone within a reasonable amount of time.

White Collar Litigation Member Randy Jones led the Mintz pro bono team. He said the agreement will have a lasting impact.

 “This is not only a great result for Christina, but it is a step in the right direction to having a fair and just policy protecting people’s personal property,” Mr. Jones said. “Right is right. And that’s been our motivation with this case, and every single social justice case that we take on. Mintz will do any part we can to use our skills as lawyers to make an impact on the community and we’ll keep fighting to make lasting change.”

The full press release can be found here.

Pro bono service is at the heart of Mintz’s culture and identity. The firm partners with nonprofits, legal services organizations, in-house legal departments, and other law firms to provide life-changing assistance for individuals in need. In the past year, more than 400 Mintz attorneys contributed to over 300 unique pro bono matters. To learn more about the firm’s pro bono work, please click here.