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New York Prisoners Win Class Action On Due Process Of Disciplinary Hearings

The US Court Of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed a US District
Court's decision to issue a preliminary injunction on a NY prison,
requiring that hearings of prisoners confined in segregation units pending
investigation of charges be held within seven days of such confinement.
The prisoners of New York's two women's prisons filed a class action suit,
to bring the prisons into conformity with the procedural due process
protection enunciated in Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 94 S.Ct. 2963,
41 L.Ed.2d 935 (1974). The US District Court issued an injunction against
the Department Of Corrections (DOC), and they appealed. The court of
appeals held that no person who has participated in the investigation of
acts complained of or who has been a witness to such acts could be a
member of an Adjustment Committee or Superintendent's proceeding relating
to those acts, and concluded that prison officials responsible for
maintaining security, are not disqualified by the due process clause from
adjudicating allegations or breaches of prison security solely by the
nature of their positions. The court of appeals held that the confinement
o: prisoners in segregation pending investigation of charges must be held
within seven days of such confinement. See our index for more rulings on
this case. See: Powell v. Ward, 542 F.2d 101 (2nd Cir. 1976)

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