U.S. First Circuit - The FindLaw 1st Circuit Court of Appeals News and Information Blog

October 2011 Archives

ABA Appellate Summit in Washington DC November 10-13

It’s not even Halloween, and we’re already looking forward to Thanksgiving. You probably are, too. After all, the First Circuit Court of Appeals is better-known in the legal world as the circuit where Thanksgiving started.

Even more exciting? Before you fast-forward through November to turkey and football, you have a chance to rub elbows with outstanding appellate lawyers, scholars, and judges at the Appellate Judges Education Institute (AJEI) Summit.

Think of it as a lawyer’s holiday couched between the two calendar holidays that warrant the consumption of mellowcreme pumpkins.

Consumer Claims Survive in First Circuit Data Breach Lawsuit

If you shop online, you’ve probably received an email from a retailer or your credit card company explaining that their system was hacked, and your personal information may have been accessed.

That warning is always followed by an attempt to reassure you that your credit card information is probably safe.

If you are overcome with the litigious spirit every time you read one of those infuriating messages - we have received three in the last year - the First Circuit Court of Appeals is willing to consider your data breach lawsuit based on Maine state law claims.

X-Ray Anal Cavity Search Doesn't Violate Fourth Amendment Rights

What lawyer can resist an anal cavity search? A cavity search case, that is.

This week, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in a civil rights claim against Worcester police officers, finding that a suspect's Fourth Amendment rights are not violated when the government uses technology to conduct an anal cavity search.

Worcester police officers arrested Shane Spencer in 2005 for operating a motor vehicle without a license. One of the officers, Gary Morris, learned that a confidential informant (CI) claimed to have seen Spencer insert a package of crack cocaine into his anal cavity just prior to the arrest. The CI had been reliable in the past, so Morris asked the Spencer to submit to a visual inspection of his anus.

Worker Assaults Bozo, Files Age Discrimination Suit

We never thought we'd see the day when a First Circuit Court of Appeals opinion would yield discussions of Bozo and an age discrimination suit, but, surprisingly, that day has come.

International Shipping Corporation (Intership) fired Genaro Bonefont-Igaravidez in 2007, (after 57 years on the job), for attacking his boss, also known as a "Bozo."

Bonefont said the alleged attack was just a pretext, and filed an age discrimination suit against Intership. The First Circuit Court of Appeals, last week, found that Bonefont did not have enough evidence to prove to a reasonable fact finder that he was wrongfully terminated.

Gov. Chafee Wins Showdown: Feds Can't Execute Wayne Pleau

The First Circuit Court of Appeals declared Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chaffee the victor in an over-three-month standoff with federal prosecutors on Thursday. Chafee refused to surrender accused murderer Jason Wayne Pleau for federal prosecution because a federal sentence could carry the death penalty, and Rhode Island rejects the death penalty.

In a matter of first impression, the First Circuit Court of Appeals held that the federal government is entitled to choose between the Interstate Agreement on Detainers (IAD) and an ad prosequendum writ in seeking custody of a state prisoner for purposes of a federal prosecution, but that once the federal government has put the gears of the IAD into motion, it is bound by the IAD’s terms.

Discriminatory Hiring Suit: Interview Doesn't Prove Qualification

Should an employer offer a courtesy interview to an underqualified, current employee who applies to an opening within the company? Probably not based on a recent case in the First Circuit Court of Appeals.

The First Circuit rejected a discriminatory hiring appeal from a Plymouth County Sheriff's office employee last week, finding that the district court had properly granted summary judgment for the sheriff's department.

First Cir. Denies Rehearing in Stieg Larrson Trilogy-Worthy Case

Does the U.S. government ever use mobster informants like Swedish government did in the Stieg Larsson Trilogy?

The answer is yes. And much like Larrson’s Zalachenko, those informants can be difficult to control.

In February, the First Circuit Court of Appeals struck an $8.4 million judgment against the U.S. government under the Federal Tort Claims Act after finding that the plaintiffs, survivors of a government informant’s victims, failed to timely file their complaint.

Flesh Eating Saw: 1st Cir Saw Defective Design, No Relief for Ryobi

We like to build things, but we don't have a table saw. When we need wood cut, we let the hardware store do it for us. On one such occasion, a store employee cut his hand on the saw while cutting our laminate shelving. There was a lot of blood. It was awful.

How does this relate to the First Circuit Court of Appeals? Defective design litigation.

The First Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued upheld a $1.5 million jury award in a negligence and implied warranty of merchantability case involving a table saw.