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Former Phoenix inmate appeals dismissal of lawsuit

PHOENIX -- A one-time inmate of a metro Phoenix jail has appealed the dismissal of her claims that her rights were violated when officers restrained her before and after she gave birth at a hospital.

A judge ruled last month that Miriam Mendiola-Martinez failed to demonstrate a clear constitutional-rights violation and explained there was no law at the time that would have put Maricopa County on notice that restraining a pregnant inmate was unconstitutional.

The judge concluded Mendiola-Martinez wasn't restrained while she was in labor at the hospital or while she was delivering her son.

But after giving birth, she was brought to a recovery room and a leg restraint was put on her ankle.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio maintained the restraint policy in his jails was fair and proper.

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