Sixth Circuit

Bunch v. Smith, 685 F.3d 546 (6th Cir. 2012). Multiple consecutive sentences for several criminal convictions totaling 89 years did not clearly violate the constitutional prohibition against sentencing juveniles to life without parole for nonhomicide offenses as established in Graham v. Florida. Juvenile was not sentenced to life without parole and there was no consensus that practice was cruel or unusual to support expanding Graham. FULL SUMMARY

Jasinski v. Tyler, 729 F.3d 531 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES  In wrongful death proceeding that arose after the father used a cattle prod on children and then killed himself and their sibling, child protection workers were immune under gross negligence standard. Worker’s failure to remove the child was not the direct cause of death.

Kovacic v. Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 724 F.3d 687 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES Trial court properly denied social workers’ summary judgment motions based on qualified immunity claim. There were not exigent circumstances sufficient for a warrantless seizure where reported incidents of physically abuse were weeks old and the most severe allegation was that a child had a bloody nose.

Pittman v. Cuyahoga County Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 640 F.3d 716 (6th Cir. 2011). LIABILITY, SOCIAL WORKERS
In father’s §1983 action claiming social worker violated his constitutional rights by blocking him from participating in custody proceedings, social worker was entitled to absolute immunity from father’s claims that she intentionally made false statements in complaint and affidavits submitted to juvenile court since conduct was related to her role as a legal advocate.

U.S. v. Roman, 2015 WL 4529437 (6th Cir.). SEX ABUSE, INTERMEDIARY Defendant could be convicted of attempting to use interstate commerce to knowingly persuade, induce, entice, or coerce minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity even though he communicated only with adult man he thought was father of 11-year-old girl. Although defendant did not contact minor directly, he used father as intermediary, promised he did not have any diseases and that he would use condoms, asked father what minor liked sexually, and purchased flowers and minor’s favorite candy.

United States v. Afyare, 2016 WL 821061 (6th Cir. 2016). In complex case involving multiple defendants, prosecution filed motions in limine to address rulings made at prior related trial. Appellate court found provision in statute criminalizing participation in “venture” required actual participation in venture involving sex trafficking. Prosecution may introduce evidence that defendants associated for purpose of furthering sex trafficking, but evidence they were in car together during unrelated traffic stops, or dined together, was irrelevant and properly excluded.

United States v. Cox, 871 F.3d 479 (6th Cir. 2017). ABUSE, CLOSED CIRCUIT TESTIMONY
Court of appeals found district court sufficiently demonstrated need for child victims of sexual abuse to testify by closed circuit television in defendant’s trial for child sexual exploitation and related offenses. Licensed professional counselor testified children would suffer trauma more profound than nervousness or reluctance to testify. District court personally questioned children, who stated it would be difficult to testify in defendant’s presence.

Wesley v. Campbell, 2015 WL 859457 (6th Cir.). Child alleged abuse at a time and place which would have likely had many witnesses, there was no medical evidence, and other alleged child victims denied abuse. Further, officer acted recklessly in omitting facts from the affidavit requesting an arrest warrant and was not clearly entitled to qualified immunity. FULL SUMMARY

Bunch v. Smith, 685 F.3d 546 (6th Cir. 2012). Multiple consecutive sentences for several criminal convictions totaling 89 years did not clearly violate the constitutional prohibition against sentencing juveniles to life without parole for nonhomicide offenses as established in Graham v. Florida. Juvenile was not sentenced to life without parole and there was no consensus that practice was cruel or unusual to support expanding Graham. FULL SUMMARY

Jasinski v. Tyler, 729 F.3d 531 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES  In wrongful death proceeding that arose after the father used a cattle prod on children and then killed himself and their sibling, child protection workers were immune under gross negligence standard. Worker’s failure to remove the child was not the direct cause of death.

Kovacic v. Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 724 F.3d 687 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES Trial court properly denied social workers’ summary judgment motions based on qualified immunity claim. There were not exigent circumstances sufficient for a warrantless seizure where reported incidents of physically abuse were weeks old and the most severe allegation was that a child had a bloody nose.

 

Pittman v. Cuyahoga County Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 640 F.3d 716 (6th Cir. 2011). LIABILITY, SOCIAL WORKERS
In father’s §1983 action claiming social worker violated his constitutional rights by blocking him from participating in custody proceedings, social worker was entitled to absolute immunity from father’s claims that she intentionally made false statements in complaint and affidavits submitted to juvenile court since conduct was related to her role as a legal advocate.

U.S. v. Roman, 2015 WL 4529437 (6th Cir.). SEX ABUSE, INTERMEDIARY Defendant could be convicted of attempting to use interstate commerce to knowingly persuade, induce, entice, or coerce minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity even though he communicated only with adult man he thought was father of 11-year-old girl. Although defendant did not contact minor directly, he used father as intermediary, promised he did not have any diseases and that he would use condoms, asked father what minor liked sexually, and purchased flowers and minor’s favorite candy.

 

United States v. Afyare, 2016 WL 821061 (6th Cir. 2016). In complex case involving multiple defendants, prosecution filed motions in limine to address rulings made at prior related trial. Appellate court found provision in statute criminalizing participation in “venture” required actual participation in venture involving sex trafficking. Prosecution may introduce evidence that defendants associated for purpose of furthering sex trafficking, but evidence they were in car together during unrelated traffic stops, or dined together, was irrelevant and properly excluded.

United States v. Cox, 871 F.3d 479 (6th Cir. 2017). ABUSE, CLOSED CIRCUIT TESTIMONY
Court of appeals found district court sufficiently demonstrated need for child victims of sexual abuse to testify by closed circuit television in defendant’s trial for child sexual exploitation and related offenses. Licensed professional counselor testified children would suffer trauma more profound than nervousness or reluctance to testify. District court personally questioned children, who stated it would be difficult to testify in defendant’s presence.

 

 

Wesley v. Campbell, 2015 WL 859457 (6th Cir.). Child alleged abuse at a time and place which would have likely had many witnesses, there was no medical evidence, and other alleged child victims denied abuse. Further, officer acted recklessly in omitting facts from the affidavit requesting an arrest warrant and was not clearly entitled to qualified immunity. FULL SUMMARY

Bunch v. Smith, 685 F.3d 546 (6th Cir. 2012). Multiple consecutive sentences for several criminal convictions totaling 89 years did not clearly violate the constitutional prohibition against sentencing juveniles to life without parole for nonhomicide offenses as established in Graham v. Florida. Juvenile was not sentenced to life without parole and there was no consensus that practice was cruel or unusual to support expanding Graham. FULL SUMMARY

Jasinski v. Tyler, 729 F.3d 531 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES  In wrongful death proceeding that arose after the father used a cattle prod on children and then killed himself and their sibling, child protection workers were immune under gross negligence standard. Worker’s failure to remove the child was not the direct cause of death.

Kovacic v. Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 724 F.3d 687 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES Trial court properly denied social workers’ summary judgment motions based on qualified immunity claim. There were not exigent circumstances sufficient for a warrantless seizure where reported incidents of physically abuse were weeks old and the most severe allegation was that a child had a bloody nose.

 

Pittman v. Cuyahoga County Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 640 F.3d 716 (6th Cir. 2011). LIABILITY, SOCIAL WORKERS
In father’s §1983 action claiming social worker violated his constitutional rights by blocking him from participating in custody proceedings, social worker was entitled to absolute immunity from father’s claims that she intentionally made false statements in complaint and affidavits submitted to juvenile court since conduct was related to her role as a legal advocate.

U.S. v. Roman, 2015 WL 4529437 (6th Cir.). SEX ABUSE, INTERMEDIARY Defendant could be convicted of attempting to use interstate commerce to knowingly persuade, induce, entice, or coerce minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity even though he communicated only with adult man he thought was father of 11-year-old girl. Although defendant did not contact minor directly, he used father as intermediary, promised he did not have any diseases and that he would use condoms, asked father what minor liked sexually, and purchased flowers and minor’s favorite candy.

 

United States v. Afyare, 2016 WL 821061 (6th Cir. 2016). In complex case involving multiple defendants, prosecution filed motions in limine to address rulings made at prior related trial. Appellate court found provision in statute criminalizing participation in “venture” required actual participation in venture involving sex trafficking. Prosecution may introduce evidence that defendants associated for purpose of furthering sex trafficking, but evidence they were in car together during unrelated traffic stops, or dined together, was irrelevant and properly excluded.

United States v. Cox, 871 F.3d 479 (6th Cir. 2017). ABUSE, CLOSED CIRCUIT TESTIMONY
Court of appeals found district court sufficiently demonstrated need for child victims of sexual abuse to testify by closed circuit television in defendant’s trial for child sexual exploitation and related offenses. Licensed professional counselor testified children would suffer trauma more profound than nervousness or reluctance to testify. District court personally questioned children, who stated it would be difficult to testify in defendant’s presence.

 

 

Wesley v. Campbell, 2015 WL 859457 (6th Cir.). Child alleged abuse at a time and place which would have likely had many witnesses, there was no medical evidence, and other alleged child victims denied abuse. Further, officer acted recklessly in omitting facts from the affidavit requesting an arrest warrant and was not clearly entitled to qualified immunity. FULL SUMMARY

Bunch v. Smith, 685 F.3d 546 (6th Cir. 2012). Multiple consecutive sentences for several criminal convictions totaling 89 years did not clearly violate the constitutional prohibition against sentencing juveniles to life without parole for nonhomicide offenses as established in Graham v. Florida. Juvenile was not sentenced to life without parole and there was no consensus that practice was cruel or unusual to support expanding Graham. FULL SUMMARY

Jasinski v. Tyler, 729 F.3d 531 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES  In wrongful death proceeding that arose after the father used a cattle prod on children and then killed himself and their sibling, child protection workers were immune under gross negligence standard. Worker’s failure to remove the child was not the direct cause of death.

Kovacic v. Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 724 F.3d 687 (6th Cir. 2013). LIABILITY, CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES Trial court properly denied social workers’ summary judgment motions based on qualified immunity claim. There were not exigent circumstances sufficient for a warrantless seizure where reported incidents of physically abuse were weeks old and the most severe allegation was that a child had a bloody nose.

 

Pittman v. Cuyahoga County Dep’t of Children & Family Servs., 640 F.3d 716 (6th Cir. 2011). LIABILITY, SOCIAL WORKERS
In father’s §1983 action claiming social worker violated his constitutional rights by blocking him from participating in custody proceedings, social worker was entitled to absolute immunity from father’s claims that she intentionally made false statements in complaint and affidavits submitted to juvenile court since conduct was related to her role as a legal advocate.

U.S. v. Roman, 2015 WL 4529437 (6th Cir.). SEX ABUSE, INTERMEDIARY Defendant could be convicted of attempting to use interstate commerce to knowingly persuade, induce, entice, or coerce minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity even though he communicated only with adult man he thought was father of 11-year-old girl. Although defendant did not contact minor directly, he used father as intermediary, promised he did not have any diseases and that he would use condoms, asked father what minor liked sexually, and purchased flowers and minor’s favorite candy.

 

United States v. Afyare, 2016 WL 821061 (6th Cir. 2016). In complex case involving multiple defendants, prosecution filed motions in limine to address rulings made at prior related trial. Appellate court found provision in statute criminalizing participation in “venture” required actual participation in venture involving sex trafficking. Prosecution may introduce evidence that defendants associated for purpose of furthering sex trafficking, but evidence they were in car together during unrelated traffic stops, or dined together, was irrelevant and properly excluded.

United States v. Cox, 871 F.3d 479 (6th Cir. 2017). ABUSE, CLOSED CIRCUIT TESTIMONY
Court of appeals found district court sufficiently demonstrated need for child victims of sexual abuse to testify by closed circuit television in defendant’s trial for child sexual exploitation and related offenses. Licensed professional counselor testified children would suffer trauma more profound than nervousness or reluctance to testify. District court personally questioned children, who stated it would be difficult to testify in defendant’s presence.

 

 

Wesley v. Campbell, 2015 WL 859457 (6th Cir.). Child alleged abuse at a time and place which would have likely had many witnesses, there was no medical evidence, and other alleged child victims denied abuse. Further, officer acted recklessly in omitting facts from the affidavit requesting an arrest warrant and was not clearly entitled to qualified immunity. FULL SUMMARY