United States Third Circuit

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Giles v. Kearney, 07-4140

In a prisoner civil rights action alleging excessive force and deliberate indifference to medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment, summary judgment for defendants is reversed in part and affirmed in part where: 1) as to three correctional officers in their individual capacities, plaintiff alleged conduct in violation of his Eighth Amendment rights that a reasonable officer would have known was a violation under the circumstances, and thus it was improper to dismiss plaintiff's complaints against the officers on the basis of qualified immunity; 2) the court did not err in finding that the use of force in a shower incident and by other officers in the infirmary cell incident was not excessive, as the record reflects that the court considered the Whitley factors and the findings made by the court were sufficient for a clear understanding of the basis of the decision; and 3) the court did not clearly err in holding that there was no deliberate indifference to plaintiff's serious medical needs.

Appellate Information

  • Argued 03/10/2009
  • Decided 07/15/2009
  • Published 07/15/2009


  • Before:  FUENTES, CHAGARES and ALDISERT, Circuit Judges.


  • United States Third Circuit


  • For Appellant:
  • Kathryn J. Gainey (Argued), Steptoe & Johnson LLP, Washington, DC, Counsel for Appellant.

  • For Appellees:
  • Judy Oken Hodas (Argued), Deputy Attorney General, Wilmington, DE, Counsel for Appellees.
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