24. Immunity.

U.S. Appeals Court



Dawson v. Newman, 419 F.3d 656 (7th Cir. 2005). A former probationer brought a state court [section] 1983 action against a county superior court judge, county clerk of court, state corrections department and parole officials, alleging that his incarceration was wrongfully continued and he that he was wrongfully placed on parole supervision after his probation revocation was overturned on appeal. The district court dismissed the action and the probationer appealed. The appeals court affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded. The court held that the district court could not dismiss claims against the clerk, who had not moved for dismissal. The court found that a county superior court judge's failure to transmit a release order to the state department of corrections for the probationer whose probation was improperly revoked, was a judicial act and was not administrative or ministerial in nature, entitling the judge to absolute judicial immunity. The court held that parole officials were not entitled to absolute judicial immunity because their acts did not involve acts analogous to those performed by judges, but involved performance of their day-to-day duties in supervising parolees. The court noted that absolute judicial immunity is not limited to government officials with the title of judge. (Indiana Department of Corrections, Madison County Superior Court)

U.S. District Court


DeToledo v, County of Suffolk. 379 F.Supp.2d 138 (D.Mass. 2005). A jail visitor who was arrested and briefly detained on an arrest warrant that was intended for another person, and a visitor who was arrested and strip searched on a warrant for her arrest that had been recalled, brought an action against correctional officers, a jail supervisor and the county. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants in part, and denied it in part. The court held that the supervisor's negligent conduct in mistakenly ordering the arrest of the wrong person did not rise to the level of a due process violation that would support a claim under [section] 1983, where the supervisor made a reasonable assumption as to the warrant target's location in the visiting area and immediately rescinded the arrest when he was alerted to his mistake by another officer. The court found that a fact issue precluded summary judgment in favor of the supervisor for arresting the second visitor, noting...

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