Case: Nicacio v. U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service

2:82-01018 | U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington

Filed Date: Dec. 27, 1982

Closed Date: 1987

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In 1984, a class of Hispanic persons brought suit against the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, alleging that its Border Patrol agents engaged in a pattern of unlawful stops to detain and interrogate persons of Hispanic appearance traveling on Washington state highways. Plaintiffs, represented by Evergreen Legal Services, alleged that agents regularly conducted roving motor vehicle patrols in search of undoc…

In 1984, a class of Hispanic persons brought suit against the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, alleging that its Border Patrol agents engaged in a pattern of unlawful stops to detain and interrogate persons of Hispanic appearance traveling on Washington state highways. Plaintiffs, represented by Evergreen Legal Services, alleged that agents regularly conducted roving motor vehicle patrols in search of undocumented aliens in Yakima Valley, an area which had substantial agricultural operations and employed many field laborers. Plaintiffs further alleged that many of the stops were based solely on the driver or occupants' Hispanic appearance. Attorneys with the Evergreen Legal Services, Farm Workers Division represented plaintiffs. They sought declaratory and injunctive relief, monetary damages and class certification.

Following a hearing on the merits of the case, the District Court (Chief Judge Robert J. McNichols) entered judgment in favor of the plaintiffs, declaring that the agents' practice of stopping vehicles without a valid search or arrest warrant, or without a particularized reasonable suspicion based on specific articulable facts, was unconstitutional. The Court issued an order requiring INS agents to keep record of each vehicle stop and the stated reasons for it, for a period of three years. Nicacio v. U.S. I.N.S., 595 F.Supp. 19 (E.D.Wash. 1984). The INS appealed.

The Court of Appeals (Circuit Judge Schroeder) affirmed. Nicacio v. U.S. I.N.S., 768 F.2d 1133 (9th Cir. 1985), opinion superseded by Nicacio v. U.S. I.N.S., 797 F.2d 700 (9th Cir. 1985). In its amended opinion, the Appeals Court held that (1) the plaintiff class had standing to bring the suit; (2) Hispanic appearance and work clothing did not constitute reasonable suspicion that persons in a vehicle were undocumented aliens sufficient to justify a motor vehicle stop; and (3) the district court did not abuse its discretion in requiring INS to document reasons for vehicle stops.

We have no further information on this case.

Summary Authors

Dan Dalton (12/11/2007)

People


Judge(s)

Beezer, Robert R. (Washington)

Goodwin, Alfred Theodore (California)

McNichols, Robert James (Washington)

Robart, James L. (Washington)

Rothstein, Barbara Jacobs (Washington)

Schroeder, Mary Murphy (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Benjamin, Thomas B. (Washington)

Chandola, Neha (Washington)

Ford, Daniel G. (Washington)

Gibbs, Robert H. (Washington)

Judge(s)

Beezer, Robert R. (Washington)

Goodwin, Alfred Theodore (California)

McNichols, Robert James (Washington)

Robart, James L. (Washington)

Rothstein, Barbara Jacobs (Washington)

Schroeder, Mary Murphy (Arizona)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Benjamin, Thomas B. (Washington)

Chandola, Neha (Washington)

Ford, Daniel G. (Washington)

Gibbs, Robert H. (Washington)

Holguín, Carlos R. (California)

Lara, Victor H. (Washington)

Matsumoto, Mari Lise (Washington)

Pauw, Robert (Washington)

Rubin, Michael (California)

Schey, Peter A. (California)

Walls, Lori (Washington)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Beatty, William (Washington)

Filppu, Lauri Steven (District of Columbia)

Golding, Marshall Tamal (District of Columbia)

Gray, Carroll D. (Washington)

Hussey, Thomas W. (District of Columbia)

Lamp, John (Washington)

Norwood, Anthony W. (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

2:82-01018

Memorandum Decision

595 F.Supp. 19

April 18, 1984

April 18, 1984

Order/Opinion

84-04074

Opinion

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

768 F.2d 1133

Aug. 16, 1985

Aug. 16, 1985

Order/Opinion

84-04074

Opinion

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

797 F.2d 700

Aug. 19, 1986

Aug. 19, 1986

Order/Opinion

81-00379

Order

Immigrant Assistance Project of Los Angeles County Federation of Labor v. Immigration and Naturalization Service

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

Nov. 22, 1995

Nov. 22, 1995

Order/Opinion

88-00379

Stipulation of Settlement

Northwest Immigrant Rights Project v. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

May 28, 2008

May 28, 2008

Settlement Agreement

88-00379

Stipulation and Order of Protection Regarding Privacy Act Information and Information Covered by 8 U.S.C. Section 1255a(c)(5)

Immigrant Assistance Project of Los Angeles County Federation of Labor v. Immigration and Naturalization Service

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

June 1, 2008

June 1, 2008

Pleading / Motion / Brief
504

88-00379

Order of Preliminary Approval of the Class Action Settlement

Northwest Immigrant Rights Project v. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

June 2, 2008

June 2, 2008

Order/Opinion

Press Release

Immigrant Assistance Project of Los Angeles County Federation of Labor v. Immigration and Naturalization Service

No Court

June 2, 2008

June 2, 2008

Press Release

Resources

Docket

Last updated Aug. 12, 2022, 3:05 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Washington

Case Type(s):

Immigration and/or the Border

Key Dates

Filing Date: Dec. 27, 1982

Closing Date: 1987

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

All persons of Mexican, Latin, or Hispanic appearance who have been, are, or will be traveling by motor vehicle on the highways of the State of Washington.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, Federal

U.S. Border Patrol, Federal

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Ex Parte Young (Federal) or Bivens

Constitutional Clause(s):

Unreasonable search and seizure

Availably Documents:

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Litigation

Order Duration: 1984 - 1987

Issues

Immigration/Border:

Border police

Detention - conditions

Detention - criteria

Detention - procedures