Submitted on Thursday, December 07, 2006
I have researched pertinent cases in review of constitutionality on the issue of using stun guns on prisoners for violations of serious infractions of prison rules. During this I first find that in Beard v. Banks the Supreme Court ruled that "prison rules restricting a prisoner's constitutional rights must be reasonably related to legitimate penological interest." This ruling would seem to give a way of establishing a policy for use of the punishment. Next I look at this issue as being one that would be restricting a prisoner's constitutional right. It had been historical ruled by the court that punishment only was under review of the eighth amendment if it was part of the sentence for the offense they were convicted of. From the case of Hudson v. McMillian we find that the Supreme Court changed this matter. The main decision is that a prisoner does not have to suffer a significant injury from excessive force to be actionable under the eighth amendment. Justice Blackmun even makes a statement during his concurring judgment that has a great interest to us on this issue. He says in striking down the significant injury requirement to meet the cruel and unusual punishment violation that with this it would allow state sponsored torture. Justice Blackmun gives several examples of activities of things that should not be allowed but would not cause significant injury. The one of main interest is "shocking them with electric currents." Blackmun gives these examples as things that would be allowed under the eighth amendment if the significant injury requirement was allowed to remain as the standard. This leads me to conclude that the using a stun gun as punishment would be a violation under the eighth amendment.
This would move me back to view Banks v. Beard. We would have to establish legitimate penological reason. It is clear use of stun... [continues]
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(2007, 04). Constitutionality of Use of Stun Guns as Punishment in Prisons. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 04, 2007, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Constitutionality-Use-Stun-Guns-Punishment-Prisons-113570.html
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