WPI 348.10 Civil Rights—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Force—No Punitive Damages—Individual Defe...
6A WAPRAC WPI 348.10Washington Practice Series TMWashington Pattern Jury Instructions--Civil
6A Wash. Prac., Wash. Pattern Jury Instr. Civ. WPI 348.10 (7th ed.)
Washington Practice Series TM
Washington Pattern Jury Instructions--Civil
April 2022 Update
Part XVII. Civil Rights
Chapter 348. Civil Rights—Damages and Verdict Forms
WPI 348.10 Civil Rights—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Force—No Punitive Damages—Individual Defendant—Special Verdict Form
We, the jury, answer the questions submitted by the court as follows:
[QUESTION 1: Did(identify person)subject the plaintiff to a deprivation of [his] [her] Fourth Amendment rights by using [or] [failing to intervene to prevent or stop the use of] unreasonable force?]
[QUESTION 1: Did(identify person who allegedly supervised others)cause the plaintiff to be subjected to a deprivation of [his] [her] Fourth Amendment rights by:
Taking action, or failing to act, when(identify person who allegedly supervised others)knew or reasonably should have known that this would cause others to use unreasonable force against plaintiff, and thereby(identify person who allegedly supervised others)set in motion a series of acts by those [he] [she] supervised, that resulted in the use of unreasonable force?]
ANSWER: (Write “yes” or “no”)
• If you answered “no” to Question 1, do not answer any other questions; sign this verdict form.
• If you answered “yes” to Question 1, answer Question 2.)
QUESTION 2: Was the unreasonable force a [proximate] cause of injury or damage?
ANSWER: (Write “yes” or “no”)
• If you answered “no” to Question 2, do not answer any other questions; sign this verdict form.
• If you answered “yes” to Question 2, answer Question 3.)
QUESTION 3: What do you find to be(name of plaintiff's)amount of damages?
(DIRECTION: Sign this verdict form and notify the bailiff.)
NOTE ON USE
This instruction, adapted appropriately, is used when the plaintiff makes allegations that the defendant used unreasonable force and violated the Fourth Amendment rights of the plaintiff. This verdict form is only for causes of action against a defendant who is being sued in his or her individual capacity; this instruction should be combined with instructions drawn from WPI Chapters 340 (Civil Rights—General Introductory Instructions) and 342 (Civil Rights—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Search and Seizure), as appropriate to the particular facts. If punitive damages are being requested, practitioners should use WPI 348.11 (Civil Rights—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Force—Punitive Damages—Individual Defendant—Special Verdict Form) instead of this instruction.
This instruction is intended for use in a civil rights action under Section 1983. Causes of action under Sections 1981 (contractual issues) and 1985 (conspiracy) are not addressed in these instructions. See WPI 340.00 (Civil Rights—Introduction).
Select the bracketed material, as applicable. Question 1 has two alternatives: the first is for a defendant who was not supervising others and allegedly caused the deprivation of Fourth Amendment rights in a direct way. The second alternative applies if the defendant allegedly caused the plaintiff to be subjected to the unreasonable force, i.e., the defendant was a supervisor who indirectly caused the deprivation of Fourth Amendment rights by directing or failing to halt the ongoing acts of employees.
If the plaintiff has Section 1983 claims against local governmental entities, or individuals acting in their official capacities, then: use the municipal liability verdict form, WPI 348.12 (Civil Rights—Municipal Liability—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Force—No Punitive Damages—Special Verdict Form); adapt the instructions from WPI Chapters 340 (Civil Rights—General Introductory Instructions) and 342 (Civil Rights—Fourth Amendment—Unreasonable Search and Seizure) as appropriate; and combine these instruction with applicable instructions from WPI Chapter 341 (Civil Rights—Municipal and Local Government Liability). See WPI 340.00 (Civil Rights—Introduction).
The word “proximate” is bracketed in Question 2. Instructions on causation must be carefully tailored to the specific case. For a discussion of causation issues, see the Comments to WPI 340.06 (Civil Rights—Causation—Comment Only), 340.02 (Civil Rights—Individual Defendant—Burden of Proof on the Issues), and 340.04 (Civil Rights—“Subjects” and “Causes to be Subjected”—Definition).
In paragraph (1), practitioners will need to clearly identify the constitutional claim at issue. Insert a reference to acting under color of law if that is a contested issue in the case, combined with WPI 340.03 (Civil Rights—“Under Color of Law”—Definition).
If the case contains another type of claim, such as an action in tort, care should be taken to label the civil rights or Section 1983 instructions as such.
If the case involves counter-claims, cross-claims, or third party claims see WPI 41.05 (Counterclaim—Cross-Claim—Third-Party Claim).
For a discussion of causation issues, see the Comments to WPI 340.06 (Civil Rights—Causation—Comment Only), WPI 340.02 (Civil Rights—Individual Defendant—Burden of Proof on the Issues), and WPI 340.04 (Civil Rights—“Subjects” and “Causes to be Subjected”—Definition).
[Current as of September 2018.]
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