Sarah Schielke, a prominent civil rights attorney based in Colorado, has made a name for herself by taking on cases involving police misconduct and wrongful arrests. Her dedication to seeking justice for her clients has led to significant settlements and policy changes within law enforcement agencies.

One of Schielke’s most notable cases involved Harris Elias, a man who was wrongfully arrested for DUI by the Loveland Police Department in 2020. Despite Elias blowing a 0.000% on a breathalyzer test and a subsequent blood test coming back negative for drugs, he was still charged with DUI. Schielke’s investigation revealed that the arresting officer, William Gates, had a history of making wrongful DUI arrests and that the department fostered a competitive culture that rewarded officers for high DUI arrest numbers. The city of Loveland ultimately settled with Elias for $400,000, a substantial sum for a case involving no physical injuries or jail time.

Schielke’s success in the Elias case is just one example of her tenacity and skill as a civil rights attorney. She has also represented clients in cases against the Fort Collins Police Department, including a lawsuit involving Andru Kulas, who was pepper-sprayed and arrested after refusing to take a ticket for trespassing. The charges against Kulas were eventually dismissed, but he suffered permanent vision damage due to the pepper spray.

Schielke has faced adversity and challenges throughout her career but remains committed to fighting for her clients’ rights. Her courage and determination have earned her recognition as one of USA Today’s Women of the Year in 2023, a testament to her impact in the civil rights field.

Schielke’s unique approach to civil rights cases, which often involves releasing body camera footage to the public, has proven effective in drawing attention to police misconduct and securing significant settlements for her clients. Her record-breaking $7 million settlement in the case of Michael Clark, who Idaho Springs police officers tased in his own home, demonstrates the power of her strategy.

As Schielke continues to take on challenging cases and hold law enforcement agencies accountable for their actions, her impact on the civil rights landscape in Colorado grows. Her new office building, funded by the settlements she has won, reminds her of her dedication to her clients and her commitment to participating joyfully in the fight for justice.

With her background in psychology and her passion for learning, Schielke brings a unique perspective to her work as a civil rights attorney. Her advice to her younger self, “Keep loving to learn,” reflects her belief in the power of knowledge and adaptability in the face of adversity.

As Sarah Schielke continues to pave her way in civil rights law, her impact on the lives of her clients and the wider community is undeniable. Her fierce advocacy and unwavering commitment to justice inspire those seeking to create a more equitable and accountable society.