Skip navigation
× You have 2 more free articles available this month. Subscribe today.

Washington Jail's Denial of Good Time Without Hearing Violates Due Process

Division 3 of the Washington State Court of Appeals has held that the Ferry County Jail’s denial of good time credits to a prisoner without notice or a hearing violated the federal Due Process Clause.

Kenneth Atwood, a Washington state prisoner, was in the Ferry County Jail (Jail) on attempted murder charges in 2000. While there he was put on twenty-four hour lockdown for (1) smoking, and (2) disobeying orders and using abusive language, and was cited but not disciplined for arguing with another prisoner. The Jail denied him good time without advance notice or a hearing, and he challenged the same in a Personal Restraint Petition (PRP).

Division 3 recognized that RCW 9.94A.728(1) required the Jail to certify Atwood’s good time unless it was rescinded for disciplinary reasons. It also found that such a disciplinary action couldn’t be taken without prior notice to Atwood and a hearing, citing Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 542, 41 L.Ed.2d 935 (1974) (Due Process requires notice and hearing before rescinding good time in disciplinary action). Therefore, Atwood’s PRP was granted. See: In re PRP of Atwood, Div. 3 #24351 (2006).

As a digital subscriber to Prison Legal News, you can access full text and downloads for this and other premium content.

Subscribe today

Already a subscriber? Login

Related legal case

In re PRP of Atwood