LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A federal appeals court Friday ruled that a lawsuit filed against two former LAPD detectives who a Sherman Oaks man believes framed him for murdering his mother can proceed.
A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena said although police officers cannot be sued in connection with court testimony, they can be sued for “unlawful actions” during an investigation.
Bruce Lisker says former Los Angeles police detectives Andrew Monsue and Howard Landgre fabricated evidence against him.
The federal court also affirmed a lower court’s ruling denying absolute immunity to Monsue and Landgre.
RELATED STORY: Judge Rules Bruce Lisker Shall Remain Free
Lisker was convicted in 1985 of second-degree murder and sentenced to 16 years to life in prison for the death of his mother, Dorka, 66, who was found stabbed and beaten to death in her Sherman Oaks home in 1983, when he was 17.
A Los Angeles Times investigation a decade ago called into question much of the evidence in Lisker’s trial, and his conviction was overturned four years later by a federal judge in Riverside who ruled that false evidence had been used and that Lisker had inadequate legal representation.
Lisker, now 49, was released from prison in 2009 after U.S. District Judge Virginia A. Phillips voided his conviction, and the state dropped charges against him.
In 2010, Lisker sued Monsue, Landgren and the city of Los Angeles, alleging his civil rights were violated by the detectives.
(©2015 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)