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Articles by David Reutter

$6,000 Sanction for Mississippi Federal Prosecutor Who Lied to Court About COVID-19 Vaccination Status

by David M. Reutter

On July 7, 2022, a federal judge for the Southern District of Mississippi levied a $6,000 sanction against a federal prosecutor for lying about his COVID-19 vaccination status.

When Assistant U.S. Attorney Theodore “Ted” Cooperstein was quizzed on three appearances before Judge Carlton W. Reeves on ...

Nebraska Supreme Court Says Revocation of Post-Release Supervision Does Not Bar Prisoner From Earning Good Time Credit

by David M. Reutter

On April 28, 2022, the Nebraska Supreme Court held that a lower state court erred in denying good time credit when resentencing a state prisoner who had violated the terms of his post-release supervision (PRS).

The Court’s opinion was issued in an appeal by Joshua J. ...

Over $386,000 Awarded to Mississippi Prisoner, Plus Hip Surgery He Was Denied

by David M. Reutter

On March 31, 2022, the federal court for the Southern District of Mississippi granted a state prisoner’s petition and enjoined the state Department of Corrections (DOC) to provide him total hip revision surgery. He was also awarded damages and attorney fees totaling over $386,000.

Since age ...

Wisconsin Pays $8,000 To State Prisoner After Seventh Circuit Revives Retaliation Claim Against Guard Over Destroyed Legal Documents

by David M. Reutter

On August 5, 2022, a Wisconsin state prisoner signed off on an agreement to accept $8,000 to resolve claims that a guard destroyed his legal documents in retaliation for a lawsuit the prisoner was preparing to file.

The settlement comes on the heels of a ruling ...

Eighth Circuit Rules Federal Prisoner Need Only Know Item Is Prohibited To Support Conviction for Possession of Contraband

by David M. Reutter

How much actual knowledge does a prisoner need to have of items in his possession to support a contraband conviction? According to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, the answer is “not much.”

That was the Court’s conclusion in a ruling filed on ...

Wisconsin High Court Admits Into Evidence Secret Tape of Prisoner Made by Fellow Prisoner

by David M. Reutter

On July 1, 2022, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin decided that just because a jailhouse snitch used a government-provided device to tape incriminating statements made by a fellow pretrial detainee, he was not acting as a “state agent,” so the defendant’s right to counsel was not ...

$2.1 Million Settlement for Estate of Detainee Who Committed Suicide in Scandal-Plagued Ohio Jail

by David M. Reutter

On May 5, 2022, Ohio’s Cuyahoga County agreed to pay $2.1 million to the estate of a mentally ill detainee arrested on bogus charges who was then left to commit suicide at the county jail (CCJ). The settlement is one of 11 so far in 30 ...

New York Prisoner’s Suit Over Thirteen-Year Solitary Stint Survives

by David M. Reutter

On March 21, 2022, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York denied state prison officials’ motion to dismiss a lawsuit seeking damages for alleged Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment violations that stranded Kayson Pearson in solitary confinement without periodic reviews for 13 years. ...

SCOTUS Sides With Condemned Georgia Prisoner Who Wants To Be Executed by Firing Squad

by David M. Reutter

Though Georgia has no other way to kill him, a condemned state prisoner convinced the U.S. Supreme Court to agree on June 23, 2022, that his objection to lethal injection is a viable civil rights claim and not a doomed petition for habeas corpus relief.

In ...

$3.75 Million Settlement for Estate of Washington Prisoner Who Died From Untreated Breast Cancer

by David M. Reutter

On February 17, 2022, the Washington Department of Corrections (DOC) stipulated to a $3.75 million judgment in state court to settle all claims — including costs and attorney’s fees — made by the estate of a prisoner who died in 2019 from breast cancer. Though DOC’s ...