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Articles by Brandon Sample

Maryland Ban on Prisoner's Book Rescinded

The Maryland Department of Corrections (MDOC) has rescinded its ban on "The Marshall Plan: The Life and Times of a Baltimore Black Panther," a book written by Marshall "Eddie" Conway, a Maryland prisoner.

Acting MDOC warden Wayne Webb banned Conway's book citing its depiction of other prisoners. Rick Bennetti ...

Former BOP Guard Convicted In Murder-For-Hire Scheme

Second BOP Guard Convicted In Assault-For-Hire

A second Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) guard involved with arranging the assault of a prisoner has been convicted of federal civil rights violations.

On July 8, 2010, Michael Kennedy was found guilty of violating the civil rights of Richard Delano, a former prisoner at the United States Penitentiary I ...

BOP Dentist Gets Slap On The Wrist for Sex Abuse

A federal judge has sentenced a former Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) dentist to five months imprisonment, five months home confinement, and a $3,000 fine for having sex with a female prisoner at the Federal Correctional Institution in Tallahassee, Florida.

Godfrey Onugha was charged with criminal sexual abuse after ...

No More Than 20 Percent Can Be Deducted To Pay Filing Fees

The provision of the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) authorizing monthly deductions from a prisoner’s account to satisfy the filing fee in a civil case does not permit prison officials to deduct more than 20 percent of a prisoner’s income, regardless of the number of cases or appeals ...

Cook County Jail Agrees to Improvements

It took a federal lawsuit by the United States Department of Justice to get Cook County to finally agree to remedy decades of inadequate conditions at its infamous Cook County Jail (CCJ).

The sweeping deal between Cook County and the Justice Department, announced in May 2010, requires CCJ to hire ...

Heck Does Not Apply to Released Prisoner Seeking Damages for Sentence Miscalculation

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Heck v. Humphrey does not bar a released federal prisoner's false imprisonment claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held on July 6, 2010.

Anthony Morrow sued the United States ...

Pre-SORNA Offenders Not Required to Register Until Attorney General’s Regulations Issued

On March 13, 2009, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit joined in a growing circuit split over the applicability of the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) to offenders who failed to register prior to February 28, 2007, the date the Attorney General promulgated regulations ...

Eighth Circuit Vacates Special Condition of Supervised Release on Possessing Materials Depicting Nudity

A special condition of supervised release prohibiting the possession of "any material, legal or illegal, that contains nudity or that depicts or alludes to sexual activity or depicts sexually arousing material" sweeps too broadly and must be vacated, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit decided July ...

Gang Colors Restriction Held Unconstitutional

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has vacated a special condition of supervised release barring the "wearing of colors, insignia, or obtaining tattoos or burn marks (including branding and scars) relative to" criminal street gangs.

The court held that the condition was unconstitutionally vague.

While serving ...