In 2012, Jose Banks and another inmate escaped from a prison in Chicago by using a rope made out of bed sheets and dental floss to lower themselves 17 stories to the ground. It was only a matter of days in Banks’ case and weeks for the cellmate before both were recaptured, which seems to have hurt Banks’ feelings. And what do we do when our feelings are hurt? That’s right, we sue the federal government for 10 million dollars because they didn’t guard us well enough to stop us from escaping.
Banks, who represented himself in the civil case, alleged his cellmate forced him to participate in the escape, which took months to plan and execute. His suit says guards should have noticed the two were chiseling an escape hole in their cell and should have stopped them long before they fled.
Banks says he has had to endure tighter restrictions than fellow inmates at his current prison because of the escape from the Metropolitan Correctional Center three years ago.
The suit also claims Banks has suffered “damage to his reputation,” as well as “humiliation and embarrassment,” and what Banks calls “injury” to his “spiritual constitution.”
He wasn’t a big fan of dangling on that there rope either, so he’d like a few bucks for that too, thanks.
Believe it or not, this suit was unsuccessful. A three-judge panel at the 7th U.S. Court of Appeals threw it out, stating that “No one has a personal right to be better guarded or more securely restrained, so as to be unable to commit a crime.” The court did, however, give banks “credit for chutzpah,” so it wasn’t all bad news.