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$2.5 Million Settlement for Illegal Strip Searches in Connecticut Jail

The State of Connecticut has entered into a settlement agreement that will cost it $2.5 million for a correctional policy of strip searching all detainees regardless of their charges.

The settlement comes in a class action filed in a Connecticut federal district court. The class is estimated to encompass 1,600 people that were searched at the New Haven Community Correctional Center (NHCCC). Between January 12, 1998, and January 12, 2001, every person that entered NHCCC was ordered to submit to a strip search.

Those searches were conducted without a reasonable individualized suspicion the detainee was carrying or concealing weapons or contraband. Once the clothing was removed, the detainees? buttocks and genitalia were examined. NHCCC?s policy violated a specific state policy that prohibited strip searches of people charged with nonviolent, non-drug related misdemeanors.

The complaint named three lead plaintiff?s. They will each receive $20,000 under the settlement. The attorney?s for plaintiffs will receive about $834,000, or a third of the settlement. The remaining class members may receive up to $10,000. They may not receive more than one payment regardless of how many times they were illegally strip-searched. See: Foreman v. Connecticut, USDC, D. CT, Case No: 3:01CV0061(W6).

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Related legal case

Foreman v. Connecticut