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Colorado Federal Facility Segregation Suit Settles For $150

Colorado federal prisoner Lonnie Benefield brought a Bivens action against United States Penitentiary (USP) personnel at Florence and its warden in 1998 for placing him in segregation without due process. The suit settled for $150.

Benefield was allegedly participating in programs suggested by the Program Review Board. When he asked to be transferred to an "appropriate" facility, for undisclosed reasons, he was allegedly placed in segregation for an indefinite term, labeled a "snitch" by staff and harassed by both staff and prisoners. He brought the action against USP Florence warden Joel Knowles and guards Felz and McDowall for Eighth Amendment cruel and unusual punishment, Fourteenth Amendment due process and equal protection violations. Benefield alleged that the segregation placement interfered with privileges, education and rehabilitation programs. He sought $25,000 per day for approximately two months of segregation placement and $10,000 for punitive damages, pain and suffering and mental anguish.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado approved the $150 settlement in 2002. See: Benefield v. United States, USDC, D. Colo., Case No. 98 RB 739 (CBS) (June 24, 2002).

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Related legal case

Benefield v. United States

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