Let's say someone wanted to force a US State to get into a legal battle to resolve an open issue that the legal system has been reluctant to resolve and for which existing laws were murky.
If a person went to a solicitor and accused an entity of illegal activity knowing in advance that the solicitor or the district attorney would try to refuse to take the case, would it theoretically be possible to then file suit against the solicitor under 42 U.S.C. 1983:
"Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress, except that in any action brought against a judicial officer for an act or omission taken in such officer’s judicial capacity, injunctive relief shall not be granted unless a declaratory decree was violated or declaratory relief was unavailable."
It is assumed:
The evidence for crimes will be solid, but the context of prosecution is not. There is no clear procedure for what court would be responsible for bringing the case to court. This is the primary reason that a DA or solicitor would refuse the case. Criminal court would handle the charges, but before criminal court could hear the case, damage (personal injury) would have to be established. Civil court would handle damages, but before a damage suit can be brought a criminal liability must be established. Procedural catch-22.
Keep in mind that the goal of this is to force a state to address a question when both state and federal government want the other to take care of the problem so that they don't have to deal with the fallout.
Is there an existing governance process that exists to handle such a problem? If there is, then this would be the correct answer. This could be a legal mechanism or a legislative mechanism.
Is there a legal procedure of which I am unaware? I cross-posted this into Politics.SE because I honestly don't think there is a clear area capable of resolving the question in isolation (yet).
As an example of this case in a hypothetical situation. A person has their life threatened by a mobster. The mobster is guilty of a crime for which solid evidence exists. A private citizen brings the evidence to a solicitor, but due to being bought off or because of political pressure or some other reason that should be determined by the court the DA refuses to prosecute. A person in the solicitor's office tips off the mobster and the mobster kills the individual's dog, burns down his house, and does other horrible things to the individual. The mobster is found guilty of the crimes and punished. The individual wishes to sue the DA in civil court. Can this be done? Updated: I suppose for the purposes of this discussion, suit of the county might be more appropriate than suit of the DA.
Context of the question and why it is here
- This is a procedural question having to do with political management of legal entities, not of federal, state, criminal or common law.
- This is a speculative question. I do not expect anyone to have a firm definitive answer, but I do not rule out the possibility that one exists. I am asking here because of that choice not to rule out the possibility that an answer exists.
I found this article to put into better words than my own why prosecutorial immunity goes too far right now. This doesn't bear directly on my question, but it does explain why my question is important.