CA6 disagrees with CA7 on de minimis injuries under § 1983 force cases

“We end with two disclaimers. As for the first disclaimer, courts have suggested that § 1983 does not provide a cause of action for ‘trifling’ injuries—whether a plaintiff alleges a violation of the First Amendment, the Fourth Amendment, or any other right—because the statute incorporates the common-law maxim de minimis non curat lex (the law does not concern itself with trifles). Williams v. Boles, 841 F.2d 181, 182-83 (7th Cir. 1988); … We need not consider this statutory question, though, because the officers raise only a constitutional argument about the Fourth Amendment. As for the second disclaimer, courts have suggested that the minor nature of the force or injury supports an officer’s claim that the officer used reasonably necessary force to subdue an arrestee. … We also need not consider this constitutional question because Young and Teichow do not attempt to justify the alleged kneeing and dragging as reasonably necessary. Rather, they argue that even unnecessary force falls outside the Fourth Amendment when it is de minimis. That rule conflicts with our law.” Chaney-Snell v. Young, 2024 U.S. App. LEXIS 9020 (6th Cir. Apr. 15, 2024).*

The officers here were not on fair notice that a prior case governed their actions, so they still get qualified immunity. Perez v. City of Fresno, 2024 U.S. App. LEXIS 8989 (9th Cir. Apr. 15, 2024).*

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