Constitutional Law – Civil Rights Act – Civil Liability of State Judicial Officers

In 1940 defendant, a state judge, granted an ex parte order transferring plaintiff, then a voluntary inmate of a Massachusetts school for the feeble-minded, to the Department of Defective Delinquents. Released on habeas corpus in 1951, plaintiff brought suit under the Civil Rights Act, claiming a denial of notice and hearing in violation of the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. On appeal, held, a judge is not liable at common law or under the Civil Rights Act for acts done in the exercise of his judicial function. Francis v. Crafts, (1st Cir. 1953) 203 F. (2d) 809, cert. den. (U.S. 1953) 74 S. Ct. 43.