Case: Palmigiano v. Baxter

1:72-cv-05053 | U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island

Filed Date: Nov. 15, 1972

Closed Date: 1976

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In 1973, a prison inmate brought suit seeking damages and declaratory and injunctive relief under 42 USC § 1983 challenging due process violations in prison disciplinary procedures at Rhode Island's Adult Correctional Institutions (A.C.I.). The inmate had been charged with inciting a disturbance, and though told that the charge might result in an additional prosecution in state courts, was not allowed to have an attorney present at the disciplinary hearing. He was also advised that his silence …

In 1973, a prison inmate brought suit seeking damages and declaratory and injunctive relief under 42 USC § 1983 challenging due process violations in prison disciplinary procedures at Rhode Island's Adult Correctional Institutions (A.C.I.). The inmate had been charged with inciting a disturbance, and though told that the charge might result in an additional prosecution in state courts, was not allowed to have an attorney present at the disciplinary hearing. He was also advised that his silence could be used against him. After reviewing the record, the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island (Judge Edward William Day) concluded that the inmate had not been denied due process because he had been given notice of the charges against him, an opportunity to respond, and an opportunity to have a counsel-substitute at his hearing. The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals reversed, finding that where the possibility exists that an inmate's disciplinary proceedings could be the subject of a criminal trial, the inmate is entitled to ""use immunity"" for statements he might make in the course of the prison hearing, and that he had a right to counsel. Palmigiano v. Baxter 487 F.2d 1280 (1st Cir. 1973). Following remand by the U.S. Supreme Court, Baxter v. Palmigiano, 418 U.S. 908 (1974), the 1st Circuit in a per curiam decision affirmed but modified the prior decision, Palmigiano v. Baxter 510 F.2d 534 (1st Cir. 1974). The case went up on appeal and was consolidated at the Supreme Court level with Clutchette v. Procunier, 510 F.2d 613 (9th Cir. 1974), PC-CA-031, which addressed similar due process violations in prison disciplinary procedures.

The U.S. Supreme Court reversed the decisions of the both the first and ninth circuits. Baxter v. Palmigiano, 425 U.S. 308 (1976). Writing for the majority, Justice White held that inmates do not have the right to retained counsel in disciplinary hearings; that permitting adverse inference to be drawn from an inmate's silence during a disciplinary hearing is not, of itself, an invalid practice; that mandating that inmates be able to confront or cross-examine witnesses unduly preempts prison officials' discretion; and that requiring that inmates have notice and opportunity to respond is premature where there is no evidence that the prison inmates were subject to loss of privileges as opposed to being charged with serious misconduct.

The docket in this case was not available on PACER, and accordingly, we do not have further information on the case.

Summary Authors

Denise Lieberman (11/7/2005)

Related Cases

Clutchette v. Procunier, Northern District of California (1970)

Palmigiano v. Garrahy, District of Rhode Island (1974)

People


Judge(s)

Campbell, John Archibald (District of Columbia)

Coffin, Frank Morey (Maine)

McEntee, Edward Matthew (Rhode Island)

White, Byron Raymond (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Allen, W. Slater Jr. (Rhode Island)

Fortunato, Stephen J. Jr. (Rhode Island)

Katz, Ellen (Massachusetts)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Israel, Richard J. (Rhode Island)

Other Attorney(s)

Active

Active

Judge(s)

Campbell, John Archibald (District of Columbia)

Coffin, Frank Morey (Maine)

McEntee, Edward Matthew (Rhode Island)

White, Byron Raymond (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Allen, W. Slater Jr. (Rhode Island)

Fortunato, Stephen J. Jr. (Rhode Island)

Katz, Ellen (Massachusetts)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Israel, Richard J. (Rhode Island)

Other Attorney(s)

Bass, Stanley A. (New York)

Coen, Cary J. (Rhode Island)

Roney, John M. (Rhode Island)

Stern, Max D. (Massachusetts)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

73-01088

Opinion

U. S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

487 F.2d 1280

Nov. 16, 1973

Nov. 16, 1973

Order/Opinion

73-01247

Ruling on Petition for Writ of Certiorari

Baxter v. Palmigiano

Supreme Court of the United States

418 U.S. 908, 94 S.Ct. 3200, 41 L.Ed.2d 1155

July 8, 1974

July 8, 1974

Order/Opinion

73-01088

On Reconsideration After Remand

U. S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

510 F.2d 534

Dec. 20, 1974

Dec. 20, 1974

Order/Opinion

74-01187

Supreme Court Opinion

Baxter v. Palmigiano

Supreme Court of the United States

421 U.S. 1010

June 9, 1975

June 9, 1975

Order/Opinion

74-01187

74-01194

Opinion

Baxter v. Palmigiano

Supreme Court of the United States

425 U.S. 308, 96 S.Ct. 1551, 47 L.Ed.2d 810

April 20, 1976

April 20, 1976

Order/Opinion

Resources

Docket

Last updated Aug. 13, 2022, 3 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Rhode Island

Case Type(s):

Prison Conditions

Key Dates

Filing Date: Nov. 15, 1972

Closing Date: 1976

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Prison inmate seeking damages and declaratory and injunctive relief to redress certain alleged deprivations of procedural due process in the administration of discipline at state adult correctional institutions

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: Unknown

Filed Pro Se: Unknown

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Rhode Island Adult Correctional Institutions (ACI), State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Availably Documents:

Any published opinion

U.S. Supreme Court merits opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Access to lawyers or judicial system

Disciplinary procedures

Type of Facility:

Government-run