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Wisconsin Pretrial Detainee's Free Speech Complaint Proceeds Over Denial of Books

Alfred Riley, a Wisconsin state detainee patient at the Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center (SRSTC), a sex offender civil commitment facility, filed a lawsuit against the State, SRSTC and various other entities alleging federal and state law violations. He claimed he was treated as a convicted prisoner even though he was a civilly-committed detainee. The court granted him leave to proceed in forma pauperis on his free speech claims.

Riley's complaint alleged violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act for limiting his access to employment and wages; excessive phone rates; random cell searches; limited electronics, food and clothing purchases; screening and monitoring of his phone calls, mail and visitors; and a prohibition on the receipt of pornography and psychology books.
The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin dismissed the bulk of Riley’s claims as meritless. Leave to proceed in forma pauperis was granted as to his free speech claims related to the prohibition on books. The state claims were dismissed without prejudice to preserve their filing in state court. See: Riley v. Doyle, U.S.D.C. (WD Wis.), (Oct. 16, 2006); 2006 WL 2947453.

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Related legal case

Riley v. Doyle