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Articles by Edward Lyon

Ninth Circuit Reverses Seizure of Funds from Federal Prisoner for Restitution

by Ed Lyon

In a case decided on August 28, 2019, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a district court’s order allowing the federal Bureau of Prisons to seize $6,671.81 from prisoner Lonnie Eugene Lillard’s institutional trust account. The U.S. Attorney had initiated the ...

Ohio Mother Loses Children and Job Due to False Arrest

by Ed Lyon

On April 11, 2019, Ohio police executed an arrest warrant for heroin trafficking in a Target parking lot in Hamilton County. Their target was Ashley Foster, who was in the lot not with a load of heroin but with her two sons – one of whom was ...

Colorado Prisoner Dies as Nurse Watches Videotape; $2.45 Million Settlement

by Ed Lyon

In September 2019, the final signature of an Arapahoe County, Colorado official was affixed to a $2.45 million settlement agreement in a civil rights lawsuit over the death of prisoner Jeffrey Scott Lillis. Lillis was 37 years old when he was booked into the Arapahoe County ...

Illinois Prisoner Wins Partial Victory on Appeal in Hernia Treatment Suit

by Ed Lyon

On July 26, 2019, a panel of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed in part and reversed in part a district court’s judgment as a matter of law against Illinois prisoner Gregory Wilson, who had filed suit against for-profit medical care provider Wexford Health Sources.

Wilson ...

Family Sues New Jersey Jail Over Prisoner Suicide

by Ed Lyon

Did you hear the one about the prisoner who allegedly hanged himself while restrained in a straitjacket? That isn’t an opening line for a sick joke; rather, it’s the contention of officials in Essex County, New Jersey when trying to explain the death of jail detainee Lucas ...

Seventh Circuit Reverses Two PLRA Dismissals for Failure to Comply with Court Forms

by Ed Lyon

On August 13, 2019, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, in a consolidated ruling, vacated the dismissals of two lawsuits based on the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA).

The PLRA contains a “three strikes” provision that allows a district court to dismiss a prisoner’s pro se civil ...

Lawsuit Proceeds Over Conditions at Orange County, California Jail

by Ed Lyon

A federal civil rights lawsuit filed in April 2019 against Orange County, California Sheriff Don Barnes was granted class-action status in September 2019 to include all detainees at the Orange County Jail (OCJ) whose telephone conversations with their attorneys were illegally recorded by GTL, the jail’s phone ...

Alaska Supreme Court Upholds Prisoner Visitation Denial

by Ed Lyon

Alaska prisoner Keilan Ebli met substance abuse counselor Kerri Pittman at the Goose Creek Correctional Center (GCCC). According to evidence gathered by GCCC staff and investigators, Ebli and Pittman entered into a personal relationship, which is prohibited by prison rules.

Photos of the two “kissing” and “displaying ...

Arkansas Supreme Court Denies Judicial Review of Prisoner’s Disciplinary Case

by Ed Lyon

Malik Muntaqim, a prisoner assigned to the Arkansas Department of Correction’s (ADC) Ouachita River Unit, was seeking a transfer to a different prison unit and experienced racial discrimination.

In his written transfer request, Muntaqim stated “something crazy will happen” if he was not transferred. After he affirmed ...

New York Prisoner Wins Claim for Excessive Confinement

by Ed Lyon

 While Terrell Hales was imprisoned at the Cayuga Correctional Facility (CCF) of New York’s Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DCCS), he was charged with drug misuse.

On April 15, 2013, he filed a Freedom of Information Law request to DCCS’s commissioner for a copy of the ...