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Administrative Law Court
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SC Administrative Law Court Decisions

James E. McNeil, #147700 vs. SCDOC

South Carolina Department of Corrections

James E. McNeil, #147700

South Carolina Department of Corrections




This matter comes before the Administrative Law Judge Division ("Division") pursuant to the appeal of James E. McNeil, an inmate incarcerated with the Department of Corrections ("Department") since March 20, 1991. On November 23, 1999, Inmate McNeil filed a grievance alleging that Department guards were grossly negligent in failing to prevent an incident in which a handcuffed inmate somehow managed to break away from two guards, work himself out of the handcuffs, and punch Inmate McNeil in the face. After the attack, Department guards helped Inmate McNeil get up and returned him to his cell, where he refused medical attention. However, Department medical staff evaluated Inmate McNeil and gave him a clean bill of health. The Department denied Inmate McNeil's grievance, stating that there was no evidence that Department employees had acted in a grossly negligent manner. Dissatisfied with the Department's response, Inmate McNeil filed this appeal with the Division on May 4, 2000, pursuant to the jurisdiction conferred by the South Carolina Supreme Court in Al-Shabazz v. State, 338 S.C. 354, 527 S.E.2d 742 (2000). In his appeal, Inmate McNeil alleges that the Department violated his constitutional rights in failing to prevent the attack.

I find that Inmate McNeil has failed to allege facts sufficient to state a cognizable constitutional claim and that his allegations do not rise to the level of a violation of the Eighth or Fourteenth Amendments. See Daniels v. Williams, 474 U.S. 327, 333 (1986) ("[w]here a government official's act causing injury to life, liberty, or property is merely negligent, 'no procedure for compensation is constitutionally required'"). Accordingly, Inmate McNeil's appeal is hereby DISMISSED and the Department's Final Decision is AFFIRMED.

IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that the Final Decision of the Department is AFFIRMED and the appeal of Inmate McNeil is DISMISSED.



Ralph King Anderson, III

Administrative Law Judge

May 23, 2001

Columbia, South Carolina

Brown Bldg.






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