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High Court weighs excessive force against accused not yet convicted of crimes

The Supreme Court is weighing the issue of the use of excessive force on inmates who have not been convicted of a crime.

04/29/2015 // West Palm Beach, Florida, US // JusticeNewsFlash // Justice News Flash // (press release)

Washington – The Supreme Court is hearing a case that calls into question the limits on the use of excessive force for inmates who are awaiting trial, and have not been convicted of any crime. The Associated Press (AP) states the issue at hand in the case is whether individuals who file legal claims against jail guards based on alleged mistreatment are required to show there was intentional or reckless use of excessive force, as opposed to simply being unreasonable.

The case pertains to an incident involving a man who says two jail officers used excessive force when transferring him to another cell. The man, Michael Kingsley, was jailed on drug charges and awaiting trial at the time. He claims he was shot with a Taser gun among other things during the incident.

Kingsley filed the suit saying his civil rights had been violated. A jury sided with the officers in the case; however, which led to the appeals.

Wendy Ward, Kingsley’s attorney asserts that there are “constitutional distinctions between those who have been convicted and those who have not,” arguing that the standard should be different for those who have not been convicted of a crime than for those who have.

A ruling on the matter is expected to be reached by June.

Justice News Flash delivers the latest in Legal News.

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