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Articles by Derek Gilna

Most Second Chance Act Money Goes to Government Agencies

by Derek Gilna and Brandon Sample

When the Second Chance Act (SCA) was signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2008, the legislation was intended to fund programs to help former prisoners find jobs, reintegrate into society and stay out of jail. Years later, however, it appears that ...

Ninth Circuit agrees with Defendant and Reverses Contempt Conviction

By Derek Gilna

Although agreeing with the government that the defendant, James Kimsey was "no saint," the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with Kimsey that he could not be held in contempt for failure to obey a "rule" prohibiting the unauthorized practice of law that "cannot serve as a ...

Mississippi Supreme Court Denies Equity Court Review of Death Penalty Cases

By Derek Gilna

The complaint of sixteen death-row inmates in Mississippi which sought Chancery Court review of the adequacy of their legal representation has been denied by the Mississippi Supreme Court for lack of jurisdiction based upon the Uniform Post-Conviction Collateral Relief Act (UPCCRA).

The prisoner claims revolved around the ...

Federal Investigation, Prosecution Targets Indiana Sheriff’s Officers

Several Lake County, Indiana Sheriff’s Department employees were the subject of a federal investigation into a gun-running scheme that resulted in criminal charges.

Lake County Sheriff John Buncich placed six staff members on administrative leave and stripped them of their law enforcement powers in May 2011 after they were ...

Tenth Circuit Voids Albuquerque’s Attempt to Ban Sex Offenders from Libraries

In a case of first impression, on January 20, 2012 the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a district court’s judgment invalidating an ordinance of the City of Albuquerque, New Mexico that prohibited registered sex offenders from entering the City’s public libraries.

The district court had granted summary ...

Discovery Sanction against New York City Sets Stage for Probable Damages Award in False Imprisonment Suit

By Derek Gilna

In a decision published on December 8, 2009, from an appeal of parts of an order of the Supreme Court, Queens County dated November 28, 2007, which denied their motion to strike defendants' answer pursuant to CPLR. 3126(3), the lower court's order was reversed, the ...

Former Puerto Rican Prisoner Wins Release but Loses § 1983 Action

Former Puerto Rican Prisoner Wins Release but Loses § 1983 Action

By Derek Gilna

Angel Luis Feliciano-Hernandez, sentenced by a Puerto Rican court in 1981 to a "term of perpetual imprisonment for treatment" for a "record of sexual abuse," for a minimum of ten years, finally won his release in 2008 ...

6th Circuit Upholds SORNA Conviction Despite Incomplete State "Implementation"

6th Circuit Upholds SORNA Conviction Despite Incomplete State "Implementation"

By Derek Gilna

David Wayne Felts' conviction for failure to register under the Sex Offender Registration Notification Act (SORNA) was upheld by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which rejected his various arguments which revolved around the question of whether or ...

Former Connecticut Prisoner's ADA and RA Complaint Survives Motion to Dismiss

By Derek Gilna

Former Connecticut state prisoner Richard Rogues' Section 1983 lawsuit for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Rehabilitation Act (RA) has survived a motion to dismiss filed by defendants, including state prison commission officials and officials at Cheshire Correctional Institution (Cheshire) in Connecticut.

The ...

Minnesota District Court Directs BOP to Reconsider Prisoner’s Denial of Halfway House Placement

By Derek Gilna

In a pre-"Second Chance Act" case, Judge Davis of the U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, has granted prisoner Steven Allen Knish's § 2241 Petition, his motion to alter or amend his judgment, and ordered the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to "promptly and in ...