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WDOC Adopts Policy Protecting Attorney-Client Communications

The Wyoming Department of Corrections (WDOC) has adopted a policy prohibiting WDOC employees from questioning prisoners about communications with their counsel.

Wyoming prisoners Stephan Pevor and Ryan Forney sued the WDOC over its practice of questioning prisoners about attorney-client communications during investigations of prison misconduct. On October 4, 2007, the U.S. District Court for the District of Wyoming dismissed Pevor and Forney’s suit as moot after adopting a policy promulgated by the WDOC prohibiting such conduct.

According to the new policy, WDOC staff and investigators are “not authorized to ask detailed questions concerning the contents of written or verbal communications between” a prisoner and his/her attorney.

Further, information provided by a prisoner concerning specific attorney-client communications is prohibited from inclusion in an investigation report unless the information is “not solicited by the investigator or staff,” provided “voluntarily” by the prisoner, and “directly impacts upon the matter under investigation.”

Finally, the policy includes training points to ensure adherence by WDOC staff. See: Pevor v. Lampert, Civ. No. 07-CV-193-B (D. Wo 2007).

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Related legal case

Pevor v. Lampert