Heyer v. U.S. Bureau of Prisons, No. 15-6826 (4th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff, currently confined as a sexually dangerous person, filed suit against BOP, alleging various claims related to BOP's failure to provide American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters for medical appointments and other important interactions, its refusal to provide him with access to a videophone, and its failure to otherwise accommodate his deafness. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of BOP. The court concluded that plaintiff's evidence was sufficient to satisfy the objective and subjective components of the deliberate-indifference inquiry. Therefore, the district court erred by granting summary judgment on plaintiff's claim that BOP failed to provide him with constitutionally adequate medical care. The court also concluded that the district court erred by granting summary judgment as to plaintiff's claim that he was unreasonably denied access to the TTY device. Finally, the court agreed with plaintiff that the district court erred by relying on BOP's voluntary, post-litigation actions to reject his remaining claims. Accordingly, the court affirmed in part, vacated in part, and remanded.