CA7: Officer punching arrestee four times after arrestee punched him gets QI

“After Charles Brumitt struck Evansville Police Department Sergeant Sam Smith, Smith defended himself by punching Brumitt four times in the face, knocking him unconscious. Brumitt sued Smith under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, asserting that Smith used excessive force in violation of his Fourth Amendment rights. Smith moved for summary judgment. He argued that the force he used was objectively reasonable and that, because no clearly established law held otherwise, he was entitled to qualified immunity. The district court denied Smith’s motion, concluding that factual disputes prevented it from determining whether the force was reasonable and whether Smith was entitled to qualified immunity. … Because we conclude that the law does not clearly establish that Smith used unlawful force, we reverse the district court’s decision and remand to enter judgment for Smith.” Brumitt v. Smith, 2024 U.S. App. LEXIS 12092 (7th Cir. May 20, 2024).* (I tried a similar case with a jail guard accused of excessive force, and the jail training Lt. said it was justified force. Directed verdict.)

Plaintiff doesn’t get partial summary judgment on his Franks claim within a malicious prosecution case. [It’s fact bound and reads like hundreds of others, so I won’t bore you.] Folks v. Sainato, 2024 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 89888 (E.D. La. May 20, 2024).*

“In sum, [plaintiffs] have failed to direct the undersigned to a case directly on-point or existing precedent placing the lawfulness of the challenged searches and seizures beyond debate. See Wesby, 583 U.S. at 64. As such, they have failed to meet their burden of establishing the Officers and/or Vaughn are not entitled to qualified immunity as to Count One. Therefore, these defendants’ motions will be granted as to Count One on qualified immunity grounds.” Howell v. McCormick, 2024 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 90102 (M.D. Tenn. May 20, 2024).*

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