Aldaba as Personal presentative for Leija v Pickens

Leija was mentally disturbed as a result of oxygen deprivation while in the hospital being treated for pneumonia. He died after being tased by and put on the floor by Pickins and other officers attempting to get him back in his room for treatment. Alsaba sued under 1983 alleging several causes of action. The district court granted summary judgment to Pickens and the other officers on all but excessive force ruling there were several factual issues in dispute. The panel,  2-1, affirmed. The majority held that while there was a government interest in detaining Leija for treatment, his mental disturbance, ill health, lack of a crime and only passive resistance of walking away make the tasing unreasonable under eh circumstances. The majority also held that under relevant 10th Circuit and other federal cases involving tasing mentally disturbed or physically ill persons, it was clearly established that Leija had the right to not be tased if he was only passively resisting. The majority noted there are factual disputes about t’s behavior such as whether he used blood as a weapon. However, the panel held the case should proceed. The dissent argued that the officers acted reasonably as Leija was out of control, used his blood as a weapon, challenged the officers to fight and was trying to leave the hospital which the doctor told the police could lead to his death. It also argued that there was no clearly established here as none of all the cases relied upon by the majority deal with a mentally disturbed patient who needs to be restrained so the doctors can treat them.