August 14, 2013 4th Circuit published opinion

Hill v Crum

Hill filed a Bivens action accusing Crum of beating him. After a new trial was ordered, Crum moved for qualified immunity which the district court denied. The panel, 2-1, reversed and remanded. The majority held that because the law in the 4th Circuit at the time of the alleged assault required the prisoner suffer more than de minimus physical injury. Hill presented no evidence that he received any injury at all. Additionally, the alleged misconduct did not rise to level of shocking the court’s conscious which requires something like torture. Thus, the majority reversed and remanded. The dissent argued that it was clearly established at the time of the incident by on point United states Supreme Court precedent that prison guards were not permitted to beat restrained compliant inmates for two minutes as punishment for a disturbance and therefore the dissent would affirm.

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