Part two: case summaries by major topic.

Position::P. 72-105 - Case overview
 
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U.S. District Court Miller v. Beard, 699 F.Supp.2d 697 (E.D.Pa. MEDICATION 2010). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 suit DELIBERATE against prison officials, a health care provider INDIFFERENCE and medical personnel, alleging deliberate DENIAL indifference to his serious medical needs under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment. The defendants moved for summary judgment. The court held that a prison nurse was not deliberately indifferent to the inmate's mental health issues, thus defeating his [section] 1983 claim of an Eighth Amendment violation, despite the claim that she engineered the discontinuance of his psychotropic medications by falsely accusing him of hoarding his medication. According to the court, the nurse had a reasonable subjective fear that the inmate was hoarding his medication. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by genuine issues of material fact as to whether a physician failed to provide adequate treatment for the inmate after taking the inmate off powerful psychotropic medications, and whether the abrupt discontinuance of the medications had a negative impact on the inmate's mood and behavior. The court found that the injuries the inmate suffered as a consequence of the physician's refusal to provide him with asthma, allergy, and migraine medication were not "serious," thus defeating the inmate's [section] 1983 claim of an Eighth Amendment violation in deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs. (State Correctional Institution at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) U.S. District Court Molina v. New York, 697 F.Supp.2d 276 (N.D.N.Y. DELIBERATE 2010). A juvenile detainee brought an action INDIFFERENCE against a state, its Office of Children and NEGLIGENCE PRETRIAL Family Services (OCFS) that operated a youth DETAINEE correctional facility, state and facility officials, and detention aides, asserting [section] 1983 claims and claims of negligence and assault and battery. The defendants moved for summary judgment. The district court granted the motion in part and denied in part. The court held that the juvenile detainee's allegations that detention aides at the youth correctional facility broke his arm while restraining him were sufficient to support a plausible Eighth Amendment claim that the aides used excessive force. The court held that the detainee's allegations that he had to wait approximately 15 hours before being diagnosed and scheduled for surgery despite the obviousness of his injuries and his own pleading for assistance, were sufficient to state an Eighth Amendment claim of deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs. (Louis Gossett Jr. Residential Center, New York) U.S. Appeals Court Orr v. Larkins, 610 F.3d 1032 (8th Cir. 2010). An DELIBERATE inmate brought a [section] 1983 claim against INDIFFERENCE prison officials alleging his rights under the PSYCHOTROPIC DRUGS Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and the Eighth Amendment were violated when he was kept in administrative segregation for nine months. The district court dismissed the complaint as frivolous and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the inmate's nine-month stay in administrative segregation did not constitute an atypical and significant hardship when compared to the burdens of ordinary prison life, as required to support the inmate's claim that his liberty interests under the Fourteenth Amendment were violated. The court found that prison officials who provided the inmate with anti-depressants, and later with anti-psychotic medication, during his nine-month stay in administrative segregation, were not deliberately indifferent to the inmate's worsening mental illness, as required to support the inmate's Eighth Amendment claim. (Eastern Reception, Diagnostic and Correctional Center, Missouri) U.S. District Court Paulone v. City of Frederick, 718 F.Supp.2d 626 ADA-Americans with (D.Md. 2010). An arrestee, a deaf woman, brought Disabilities Act an action against a state, a county board, and a DENIAL EQUIPMENT sheriff alleging violations of the Americans with HANDICAP HEARING Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act, IMPAIRED and related torts. The state and sheriff moved to RA-Rehabilitation dismiss or, in the alternative, for summary Act judgment. The district court granted the motions in part and denied in part. The court held that the arrestee failed to allege that any program or activity she was required to complete following her arrest for driving under the influence (DUI) and during her subsequent probation, received federal funds, as required to state Rehabilitation Act claims against the state for discriminating against her and denying her benefits because of her deafness. The court found that the arrestee stated an ADA claim with her allegations that, after her arrest and during her detention, police officers denied her the use of a working machine that would have allowed her to make a telephone call, help in reading and understanding forms, and access to a sign language interpreter. (Frederick County Adult Detention Center, Maryland) U.S. District Court Robinson v. Catlett, 725 F.Supp.2d 1203 (S.D.Cal. ADA-Americans with 2010). A state inmate filed a [section] 1983 Disabilities Act action against prison officials alleging DELIBERATE constitutional violations and violations of the INDIFFERENCE Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the EQUIPMENT RA- Rehabilitation Act. The officials moved for Rehabilitation Act summary judgment. The district court granted the motion. The court held that the decision to assign the inmate to an upper bunk did not demonstrate deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs. The court noted that the inmate requested a vacant cell, rather than a lower bunk assignment, and officials assigned the inmate to a lower bunk once they understood problem. The court held the confiscation of the inmate's cane did not demonstrate deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs and did not violate the Rehabilitation Act. The cane was confiscated after the inmate attempted to strike another prisoner with it. The court found that prison officials' denial of the disabled inmate's request for his own cell did not amount to intentional discrimination on the basis of a disability, required to warrant the award of monetary damages under ADA or the Rehabilitation Act, even though officials had initially placed the inmate in an upper bunk. (Calipatria State Prison, California) U.S. District Court Swan v. U.S., 698 F.Supp.2d 227 (D.Mass. 2010). A DENTAL CARE prisoner brought a pro se action against the INADEQUATE CARE United States under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), asserting negligence after federal medical center officials allegedly failed to provide him with adequate dental care. The government moved for summary judgment. The district court held that a fact issue as to whether the prisoner was afforded the right to preventative dental care precluded summary judgment. Despite his periodontal disease, the prisoner did not receive a dental cleaning for almost one year following his arrival. (Federal Medical Center Devens, Massachusetts) U.S. District Court Tafari v. McCarthy, 714 F.Supp.2d 317 (N.D.N.Y. DENIAL TRANSFER 2010). A state prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against employees of the New York State Department of Correctional Services (DOCS), alleging, among other things, that the employees violated his constitutional rights by subjecting him to excessive force, destroying his personal property, denying him medical care, and subjecting him to inhumane conditions of confinement. The employees moved for summary judgment, and the prisoner moved to file a second amended complaint and to appoint counsel. The court held that there was no evidence that the state prisoner suffered any physical injury as result of an alleged incident in which a correctional officer spit chewing tobacco in his face, as required to maintain an Eighth Amendment claim based on denial of medical care. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact as to whether state correctional officers used excessive force against the prisoner in the course of his transport to a different facility. The court held that state correctional officers were not entitled to qualified immunity from the prisoner's [section] 1983 excessive force claim arising from his alleged beating by officers during his transfer to a different facility, where a reasonable juror could have concluded that the officers knew or should have known that their conduct violated the prisoner's Eighth Amendment rights, and it was clearly established that prison official's use of force against an inmate for reasons that did not serve penological purpose violated the inmate's constitutional rights. The inmate allegedly suffered injuries, including bruises and superficial lacerations on his body, which the court found did not constitute a serious medical condition. (New York State Department of Correctional Services, Eastern New York Correctional Facility) U.S. District Court U.S. v. Burhoe, 692 F.Supp.2d 137 (D.Me. 2010). INVOLUNTARY The government moved for order permitting MEDICATION MENTAL involuntary administration of medication to HEALTH render a defendant competent to stand trial on charge of possession of firearms after having been previously committed to a mental institution. The district court held that the government established an important governmental interest in the prosecution of the defendant, granting the motion. The court noted that the defendant was charged with the offense of possession of firearms after having been previously committed to a mental institution, arising out of an incident in which he allegedly fired a rifle at a state trooper and ultimately was shot by the police, and there were also state charges pending against the defendant for aggravated attempted murder and reckless conduct with a...

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