Holding: The court of appeals erred in entering summary judgment against the petitioners, police officers who filed a lawsuit against the city where they worked, for failure to invoke 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in their complaint. Federal pleading rules do not countenance the dismissal of a complaint for imperfect statement of the legal theory supporting the claim. And in particular, no heightened pleading rule requires plaintiffs seeking damages for violations of constitutional rights to invoke § 1983 expressly in order to state a claim.
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