Ricks v. Shover

Allegation: Skippack Township, Penn. prison guard rubs his erect penis against inmate’s backside (both men are clothed). The inmate complains to a supervisor, who smashes the inmate’s head into a wall. Third Circuit: For the first time, we hold that a single act of sexual abuse by a guard can violate the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment (even absent force or injury). The inmate can amend his sex abuse claim against the guard. Moreover, his excessive force claim against the supervisor should not have been dismissed.

Tags: 2018, Cruel and Unusual Punishment, Eighth Amendment, Excessive Force, Third Circuit

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