July 29, 2016
In the case of Mathis Kearse Wright, Jr. v. Sumter County Board of Elections and Registration, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit issued an opinion yesterday, July 28, 2016. After the District Court had determined that the undisputed facts and the law required a decision for the County without a trial, also called summary judgment, Wright appealed.
The Eleventh Circuit determined that the District Court made credibility determinations that were not appropriate in the summary judgment stage and for that reason, reversed the District Court’s grant of summary judgment to the Sumter County Board of Elections and Registration.
The Eleventh Circuit remanded the case back to the District Court for further proceedings, where the Plaintiff still has the burden of proof to show the challenged plan has a discriminatory intent or effect. We do not believe the Plaintiff will be able to meet this burden because there is no such intent or effect.