Parker v. Beckley

Federal lawsuit against a magisterial district judge and court officer in Cumberland County who illegally detained Alex Parker to summon and await federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to investigate his immigration status. Mr. Parker was before the judge to get married to his fiancée.

Court/Assoc.: Federal District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania

Attorneys/Firms: Attorneys/Firms: Golnaz Fakhimi, Molly Tack-Hooper, and Vanessa Stine of the ACLU of Pennsylvania; Jonathan Feinberg of Kairys, Rudovsky, Messing, Feinberg & Lin LLP; and Seth Kreimer of the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

On February 14, 2019, the ACLU of Pennsylvania and cooperating counsel filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against Magisterial District Judge Elizabeth Beckley of Cumberland County and an unknown court officer. On May 23, 2017, Beckley and the court officer illegally detained Alex Parker to summon and await ICE officers to investigate Mr. Parker’s immigration status.

Mr. Parker is a lawful permanent resident who had appeared in front of Judge Beckley to be married to his fiancée, Krisha Schmick, a U.S. citizen.

Parker’s detention by Beckley and the officer eventually ended when ICE officers arrived and confirmed his immigration status. Parker and Schmick awkwardly went forward with the ceremony, in part, because they had already paid for it, and are now happily married and living in Florida.

The ACLU’s lawsuit outlines multiple illegal actions by Beckley and the court officer, including unlawful detention, interfering with the right to marry, and discrimination based on Parker’s race and national origin. The lawsuit is based on both the U.S. Constitution and federal civil rights law.

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