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Consent Decree Improving Conditions on Louisiana Death Row Terminated

A landmark 1990s consent decree improving conditions on death row has been terminated under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA).

In 1991, the warden at the Louisiana State Penitentiary (LSP) settled a lawsuit brought on behalf of current and future death row prisoners. The consent decree required LSP officials to provide, among other things, contact legal visits, the creation of a legal assistance program, a law library and training of prisoner substitute counsel.

On September 18, 2000, the consent decree was terminated on a motion by the defendants invoking PLRA. Under the PLRA, consent decrees entered without a finding that the relief granted is narrowly drawn and extends no further than necessary to correct the denial of a federal right is subject to immediate termination. These requirements were not in effect when the consent decree was entered, but that is immaterial under PLRA. See: Bates v. Lynn, USDC, M.D. La., No. 89-65-B-1. The plaintiffs were represented by ACLU National Prison Project in the 1991 settlement.

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Related legal case

Bates v. Lynn

No other information is currently available.