Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

June 20, 2013

Judge tosses Va. woman’s shackling lawsuit


Associated Press

RICHMOND, Va. —  A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit by a Fredericksburg woman who claimed she was shackled by jail officials during childbirth.

Tiarra Fain alleged that Rappahannock Regional Jail officials violated the Constitution’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

U.S. District Judge John Gibney granted a defense motion to dismiss the complaint. In his ruling Wednesday, Gibney said there was nothing in case law that would make it evident to a reasonable officer that restraining Fain during and after labor violated her Eighth Amendment rights.

The judge also said there was no evidence that jail Superintendent Joseph Higgs participated in Fain’s treatment.