545 F.2d 30 (7th Cir. 1976), 76-1649, Piphus v. Carey

Docket Nº:76-1649, 76-1652.
Citation:545 F.2d 30
Party Name:Jarius PIPHUS, a minor and Geneva Piphus, guardian ad litem for Jarius Piphus, Plaintiffs-Appellants, v. John D. CAREY et al., Defendants-Appellees. PEOPLE UNITED TO SAVE HUMANITY et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants, v. John D. CAREY et al., Defendants-Appellees.
Case Date:November 22, 1976
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
 
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Page 30

545 F.2d 30 (7th Cir. 1976)

Jarius PIPHUS, a minor and Geneva Piphus, guardian ad litem

for Jarius Piphus, Plaintiffs-Appellants,

v.

John D. CAREY et al., Defendants-Appellees.

PEOPLE UNITED TO SAVE HUMANITY et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants,

v.

John D. CAREY et al., Defendants-Appellees.

Nos. 76-1649, 76-1652.

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

November 22, 1976

Argued Oct. 18, 1976.

Page 31

David A. Goldberger, John S. Elson, Chicago, Ill., for plaintiffs-appellants.

Michael J. Murray, Thomas P. Brown, Heineke & Schrader, Chicago, Ill., for defendants-appellees.

Before CLARK, Associate Justice (Retired), [*] CASTLE, Senior Circuit Judge, and TONE, Circuit Judge.

TONE, Circuit Judge.

The District Court found that the rights of the plaintiff public school students to procedural due process had been violated by suspensions without hearings, and that the defense of good faith was not available to the defendant school authorities. Nevertheless, the court refused to award damages because of the lack of evidence of injury, and omitted awarding equitable or declaratory relief although acknowledging that such relief would be appropriate. We reverse, holding that damages and equitable and declaratory relief should have been granted.

The suspensions in both cases were for 20 days. One plaintiff was kept out of school for 8 days and the other for 17 days before their readmission resulting from preliminary injunction proceedings. After hearing both cases on their merits on stipulated records, the District Court held that both suspensions had been ordered without the due process guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment and that the defense of good faith was not available to the defendants. Inasmuch as the defendants do not question either holding on appeal, 1 the District Court's determination is conclusive on the liability issue. After finding the defendants liable, the court went on to observe that declaratory relief would be appropriate and that references to plaintiffs' suspensions should be deleted from their records. In dealing with plaintiffs' damage claim, however, the court held that, while the defendants' failure to satisfy the criteria for the defense of good faith 2 "technically" entitled plaintiffs to damages, none had been proved. The court dismissed the complaints, ordering no relief whatsoever.

Plaintiffs, in support of their damage claim, attempted to show the value of each missed day of school by submitting data on cost per pupil per day. After the court's decision, plaintiffs filed a "motion to amend the final order," in which they sought reconsideration of the damage issue. Judge McLaren, who rendered the initial decision, reopened the issue of damages, and plaintiffs then submitted data on non-resident tuition charges. Following Judge McLaren's death, the case was reassigned to Judge Leighton, who denied the post-trial motions.

The damage issue is controlled by Hostrop v. Board of Junior College District No. 515, 523 F.2d 569 (7th Cir. 1975), cert. denied, 425 U.S. 963, 96 S.Ct. 1748, 48 L.Ed.2d 208 (1976). We recognized in that case that non-punitive damages for the injury which is "inherent in the nature of the wrong" are recoverable for...

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