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The United States Constitution protects prison inmates from<br />the infliction of “cruel and unusual punishments.”  Fourt...
Fall 2009 Citation Relay Passage
Fall 2009 Citation Relay Passage
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Fall 2009 Citation Relay Passage


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To accompany the Fall 2009 Citation Relay PowerPoint presentation.

Presented by Bob Brain and Selina Farrell at 2010 LWI Conference in Marco Island, FL.

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Transcript of "Fall 2009 Citation Relay Passage"

  1. 1. The United States Constitution protects prison inmates from<br />the infliction of “cruel and unusual punishments.” Fourth <br />(1)<br />Amend., United States Const’n. The Eighth Amendment is violated<br />(2)<br />when a prison corrections officer imposes “. . . unnecessary and <br />wanton infliction of pain.” Whitley V. Albers, Jr., 475 United <br />States Rpts. 312,320 (U.S. 1986). The question of whether <br />unnecessary and wanton infliction of pain occurs during <br />officers’ attempts to calm a prison disturbance<br />depends on whether “force was applied in a good faith effort to <br />maintain or restore discipline or maliciously and <br /> (3)<br />sadistically for the very purpose of causing harm.” Id at 320-<br />321 <br />The United States Supreme Court developed the Whitley <br />test, based on its analysis in Whitley, to assess whether force <br />(4)<br />was used in bad faith. see id at 321; see, also, Virginia v. <br />Thomson, 475 Southeast. R. 732, 735,738 (VA 1998)(applying the <br />Whitley test). This test considers five factors: (1) the extent <br />of the injury inflicted; (2) the need for the application of <br />force; (3) the relationship between the need and the amount of <br />force that was used; (4) the extent of the threat to the safety <br />of staff and inmates, as reasonably perceived by the responsible <br />officers on the basis of the facts known to them; and (5) any <br /> (5)<br />efforts to temper the severity of a forceful response. Id at <br />321. <br />The totality of the circumstances shows that Brian Wilson’s <br />Eighth Amendment right to be free from cruel and unusual <br />punishment was violated. Thus, the district court erred in <br />granting summary judgment in favor of Officer Ragosa on the <br />grounds of qualified immunity, and the order should be reversed.<br />Ragosa inflicted serious injuries on Wilson, which fulfills the <br />objective component of an Eighth Amendment excessive force <br />violation. See Hudson v. McMillian, 503 US 1,7-8 (U.S. 1992); <br /> (6)<br />Atkins v. B.J. Michaels, 473 Fed.Rptr. 3rd 1207, 1211-213 (en <br />banc)(Ninth Circ. 2008). The United States Supreme Court <br />deemphasizes this component because contemporary standards of <br />`(7)<br />decency can be violated without serious injury. see id at 8-9. <br />As a result, the objective component is merged with the extent <br /> (8)<br />of injury factor. see id at 7.<br />