UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT
BRIAN MCPHERSON; CORONADO
POLICE DEPARTMENT; CITY OF
CORONADO, a municipal
Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Southern District of California
Larry A. Burns, District Judge, Presiding
Argued and Submitted
October 9, 2009—Pasadena, California
Filed December 28, 2009
Before: Harry Pregerson, Stephen Reinhardt and
Kim McLane Wardlaw, Circuit Judges.
Opinion by Judge Wardlaw
Steven E. Boemer, David Stotland, Carrie L. Mitchell of
McDougal, Love, Eckis, Smith, Boehmer & Foley, El Cajon,
California, for the appellant.
Eugene G. Iredale, Julia Yoo of Law Offices of Eugene G.
Iredale, San Diego, California, for the appellee.
WARDLAW, Circuit Judge:
Early one morning in the summer of 2005, Officer Brian
McPherson deployed his taser against Carl Bryan during a
traffic stop for a seatbelt infraction. Bryan filed this action
under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, asserting excessive force in violation
of the Fourth Amendment. Officer McPherson appeals the
denial of his motion for summary judgment based on quali-
fied immunity. We affirm the district court because, viewing
the circumstances in the light most favorable to Bryan, Offi-
cer McPherson’s use of the taser was unconstitutionally
excessive and a violation of Bryan’s clearly established rights.
I. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
Carl Bryan’s California Sunday was off to a bad start. The
twenty-one year old, having stayed the night with his younger
brother and some cousins in Camarillo, which is in Ventura
BRYAN v. MCPHERSON
County, planned to drive his brother back to his parents’
home in Coronado, which is in San Diego County. However,
Bryan’s cousin’s girlfriend had accidently taken Bryan’s keys
to Los Angeles the previous day. Wearing the t-shirt and
boxer shorts in which he had slept, Bryan rose early, traveled
east with his cousins t