It seems almost silly to argue, as the University of the Incarnate Word does, that UIW’s police force is a governmental body. Yet, that is the very argument the school made to the Texas Supreme Court yesterday. I previously wrote about this appeal here and here. UIW seeks the status of “qualified immunity.” With the sort of qualified immunity of a governmental entity, the lawsuit by the family of Cameron Redus would be dismissed. Young Mr. Redus was shot and killed by UIW police in 2013. He was killed by a UIW police officer.
The district court and the Fourth Court of Appeals sided with the Redus family. They found that UIW was not an arm of the government. But, the reality of the Texas Supreme Court is that no matter how silly the argument is, if that argument is made by the employer or by the defendant in a claim for damages, that argument might win. The Texas Supreme Court is remarkably biased in favor of the defendant, these days.
The heart of the argument appears not to have changed. UIW is still arguing that since their small police force must be licensed by the state, then it must be a governmental body. The attorney did specific that the school only argues the police force is a governmental body, not UIW in its entirety. See San Antonio Express News report. . . . Well, ok, glad that is cleared up. But, still, if state licensing makes a private sector entity public, then every licensed barber is equally an arm of the state government.