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NY Prisoner’s Disciplinary Action Reversed for Failure to Consider His Mental Health Problems

On August 15, 1989, Luis Rosado, a New York state prisoner, was referred to the psychiatric unit at the Clinton Correctional Facility. While en route, he cut a guard’s arm with a razor blade. The cut required twenty-five stitches. A hearing officer found him guilty of assault and imposed a sanction of six years in special housing, six years’ loss of good time and six years’ loss of privileges. The hearing officer didn’t consider Rosado’s mental health issues even though they were obvious. Rosado appealed.

On appeal, the Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, 3rd Dept. found that where a prisoner is obviously mentally ill, prison disciplinary officers are required to consider the same in determining the prisoner’s guilt and/or sanctions. On that basis, the Court reversed Rosado’s conviction and sanctions and remanded the case to prisoner disciplinary personnel for further proceedings. See: In the Matter of Rosado v. Kuhlmann, 164 AD2d 199; 563 N.Y.S. 2d 295, (1990).

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Related legal case

In the Matter of Rosado v. Kuhlmann