Adrian Bacon v. Michael Wood
UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 7:13-cv-00565-JPJ. Copies to all parties and the district court/agency. . Mailed to: Adrian Nathaniel Bacon. [15-6073]
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UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
ADRIAN NATHANIEL BACON,
Plaintiff - Appellant,
C/O MICHAEL WOOD; C/O WEBB; C/O C. ROSE; C/O K. BRINKLEY;
Defendants - Appellees.
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western
District of Virginia, at Roanoke.
James P. Jones, District
May 29, 2015
July 1, 2015
Before SHEDD, KEENAN, and WYNN, Circuit Judges.
Affirmed in part, vacated in part, and remanded by unpublished
per curiam opinion.
Adrian Nathaniel Bacon, Appellant Pro Se. Kate Elizabeth Dwyre,
OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF VIRGINIA, Richmond, Virginia,
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
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Adrian Nathaniel Bacon, a Virginia prisoner, appeals the
district court’s order granting summary judgment, on the ground
of qualified immunity, to Correctional Officers Michael Wood and
(together, with Webb and Wood, “Defendants”) on his deliberate
indifference claim in an action filed under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
We affirm in part, vacate in part, and remand.
“We review de novo an award of summary judgment on the
basis of qualified immunity.”
188 (4th Cir. 2012).
Durham v. Horner, 690 F.3d 183,
“Summary judgment is proper only if taking
the evidence and all reasonable inferences drawn therefrom in
the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, there is no
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
As an initial matter, we agree with Bacon that the district
therefrom, in the light most favorable to him.
court’s conclusions that Bacon had been handcuffed during the
incident with Defendants and had admitted to refusing to comply
with prison procedures for removing handcuffs while in his cell
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are not supported by any evidence in the present record. 1
does the record include evidence of the prison’s policies or
procedures for removing a prisoner’s handcuffs while he is in
Instead of viewing the evidence in Bacon’s favor, the
presuming the existence of evidence favorable to Defendants that
was not in the record.
This was impermissible at the summary
See Jacobs v. N.C. Admin. Office of the Cts.,
780 F.3d 562, 570 (4th Cir. 2015).
violation of a constitutional right, and (2) whether that right
was clearly established at the time of the alleged violation.”
Raub v. Campbell, __ F.3d __, __, 2015 WL 1926416, at *4 (4th
Cir. Apr. 29, 2015) (No. 14-1277).
“Eighth Amendment analysis
necessitates inquiry as to [(1)] whether the prison official[s]
acted with a sufficiently culpable state of mind (subjective
component) and [(2)] whether the . . . injury inflicted on the
inmate was sufficiently serious (objective component).”
Shreve, 535 F.3d 225, 238 (4th Cir. 2008) (internal quotation
Although Bacon states for the first time in his informal
appellate brief that he was handcuffed at the relevant time, he
maintains here, as he did in the district court, that he
violated no prison policy.
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marks omitted); see Hudson v. McMillian, 503 U.S. 1, 6-10 (1992)
assist courts in assessing subjective component), abrogated on
other grounds by Wilkins v. Gaddy, 559 U.S. 34 (2010).
the district court viewed the facts in the light most favorable
to the Defendants, we are compelled to conclude that the court
erroneously granted summary judgment on Bacon’s Eighth Amendment
excessive force claim.
With regard to the subjective component, the district court
concluded that, because Defendants Wood and Webb used an amount
of force that caused only minimal injury in order to remove the
restraints from a noncompliant prisoner, their actions must be
characterized “as a good faith effort to maintain or restore
Hudson, 503 U.S. at 6.
Because we disagree with
the district court’s description of the factual circumstances,
we conclude that there was no factual basis for the court’s
conclusion at the summary judgment stage.
Instead, applying the
Whitley factors, we conclude that the evidence shows no threat
to discipline, no need to apply any force on Bacon, and that the
use of any amount of force by Wood and Webb was disproportionate
to the need to use force. 2
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See Iko, 535 F.3d at 239; see
Wilkins, 559 U.S. at 37-38.
With regard to the objective component of the excessive
force claim, the district court relied on its analysis under the
subjective component in concluding that Bacon failed to satisfy
the objective component’s requirements.
Because the objective
component is not demanding, Williams v. Benjamin, 77 F.3d 756,
decency always are violated” when “prison officials maliciously
and sadistically use force to cause harm,” Hudson, 503 U.S. at
9, we conclude that the district court erred in this regard as
See Stevenson v. City of Seat Pleasant, 743 F.3d 411,
The district court also concluded based on facts not in
the record that Wood and Webb employed a de minimis amount of
It also relied on its conclusion that, because other
plausible causes for Bacon’s injury exist, Bacon was not
entitled to the inference that Wood and Webb caused his injury.
Such reasoning is at odds with the district court’s obligations
when deciding a summary judgment motion.
See Tolan v. Cotton,
134 S. Ct. 1861, 1866 (2014); Durham, 690 F.3d at 188. In any
event, we do not agree that the amount of force used here can be
considered de minimis based solely on the extent of Bacon’s
injury. See Wilkins, 559 U.S. at 37-38; Hudson, 503 U.S. at 910.
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Thus, he has forfeited appellate review of this
See 4th Cir. R. 34(b).
summary judgment with respect to Bacon’s deliberate indifference
claim against Rose, Brinkley, and White; vacate the order with
respect to Bacon’s excessive force claim against Wood and Webb;
We dispense with oral argument because the facts
and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials
AFFIRMED IN PART,
VACATED IN PART,
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