Man Ordered Through Courthouse Metal Detector Can Sue, Appeals Panel
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
February 7, 2006
BAY CITY, MICHIGAN--The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled last week that Amos Wells, Jr. can take legal action against Bay County after courthouse employees required him to walk through a metal detector.
Wells claims that on August 4, 2002, he went inside the Bay County Court Facility to attend a hearing involving his son. Once inside the entry doors, a deputy told Wells to go through the metal detector.
Wells told the officer that a pain-killing implant was installed in his spine to control his chronic regional pain syndrome. Even though Wells showed the device -- which protruded out of his abdomen -- to the deputy, and presented a card from his doctor, the officer ordered him through the metal detector.
Wells said that he had to undergo surgery later because the implant malfunctioned due to interference from the metal detector.
He tried to sue Bay County two years ago, but Circuit Judge Kenneth Schmidt ruled against Wells because he did not explain how he would be injured by the metal detector. Schmidt also noted that Wells had, in fact, gained access to the building and the courtroom.
Wells appealed that ruling, and last Monday the state appeals court said that Wells had presented enough proof of his disability and that he should have been given a reasonable accommodation under the 1990 Americans With Disabilities Act.
The Bay City Times reported that no date has been set for a jury trial.
"Judge rules disabled man can sue Bay County" (Bay City Times)