Less than Lethal Force Liability
Loaded on Oct. 15, 1996
published in Prison Legal News
October, 1996, page 7
The April, 1995, issue of the Creighton Law Review contains and extremely informative article titled Less Than Lethal Force Weaponry: Law Enforcement and Correctional Agency Civil Law Liability for the Use of Excessive Force, by Neal Miller. While much of the article's focus is on the use of force by police most of that analysis and a separate section covers the use of Less Than Lethal Force (LTLF) in prisons. LTLF consists of tasers, stun guns, pepper spray, mace, tear gas, batons and similar weapons which while potentially deadly are not in and of themselves designed to kill. The law review article gives a rundown on the principles of state law and federal liability for the use of force, the government's liability, the manufacturers liability (the makers of the equipment are also liable for the misuse of their product and can be sued accordingly). Due to space limitations PLN cannot reprint the article.
Anyone who is litigating the use of LTLF weapons should read this law review article as it provides an extensively footnoted, comprehensive analysis of legal facts and principles to use in litigation. The best time to read this article is before drafting the complaint. The citation for the article is: 28 Creighton L.Rev. 733, April, 1995.
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