A University of Utah associate professor of law is working on a high-profile case in Idaho in which a prison inmate claims that prison officials have retaliated against him because previous litigation he brought forth got a guard fired.
Professor Michael Teter earlier this month filed a brief in a pro bono case before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of his client, Jody Carr, who is incarcerated in Idaho.
Carr alleges that prison officials have placed him in segregation for over 15 months, retaliated with transfers to other prisons, and several guards contaminated his food with feces, leaving him violently ill for months.
The district court granted the defendants’ summary judgment. Carr appealed and earlier this year, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals appointed Teter as Carr’s pro bono counsel. Several S.J. Quinney College of Law students assisted Teter with the brief, including: Elle Barker, Tejay Coon, Hillary King, and Ilsy Melendez.
Carr claims his constitutional rights were violated by the Idaho Department of Corrections after he filed previous litigation against corrections officials. The prior litigation resulted in the firing of a prison guard for placing a false entry in Carr’s file about an alleged attempted escape.
Since then, Carr claims prison officials have engaged in an endless series of retaliatory acts against Carr. They have transferred him all around the state’s prison system, including to the state’s maximum-security institution, despite the fact that Carr is not a maximum-security prisoner, according to court documents.
They have also kept him locked in administrative segregation for over a year, without any notice or hearing. They have denied him the requisite reviews to adjust his protective custody status. And, worst of all, several prison officials conspired to contaminate Carr’s food with human feces, leaving him violently ill for months, court documents state.
Teter and the students’ brief asks the court to reverse the district court’s summary judgment and orders, which would revive Carr’s abuse claims against the prison.