US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Opinions
Converse v. City of Kemah
Opinion Date: June 12, 2020
Judge: James L. Dennis
Areas of Law: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law
Plaintiffs, family members of Chad Ernest Lee Silvis, filed suit against police officers for deliberate indifference after Silvis committed suicide in a jail cell by hanging himself with a blanket that one of the officers gave him. The Fifth Circuit reversed the district court's dismissal of plaintiffs' claims based on qualified immunity, holding that the complaint contains sufficient factual allegations to state a claim for relief. In this case, plaintiffs have pleaded sufficient facts that allow the court to draw the reasonable inference that the officers are not entitled to qualified immunity because they were subjectively aware that Silvis was at a significant risk of suicide and responded unreasonably to that risk by failing to remove the blanket from Silvis's cell, in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment.
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