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Articles by Mark Wilson

Ninth Circuit Finds California Prisoner’s Administrative Remedies Effectively Unavailable

Joshua Franklin Snyder was a pretrial detainee at two Riverside, California, detention facilities. While there, Snyder complained about unsanitary ...

Ninth Circuit Reverses Lower Court’s Dismissal of California Prisoner’s Religious Freedom Lawsuit

On July 21, 2020, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a lower court’s dismissal of a prisoner’s religious freedom suit that had been dismissed as time barred.

California prisoner C. Dwayne Gilmore brought federal suit, alleging religious freedom claims in violation of ...

Fourth Circuit: ADA Relief Claims Improperly Dismissed in Virginia

In 2006, Virginia prisoner Douglas Fauconier was diagnosed with myasthenia gravis, ...

As Prison COVID-19 Cases and Deaths Rise, Washington State Supreme Court Looks Away

That was a claim by a Majority of the en banc Washington state Supreme Court on July 23, 2020, in a 5-4 decision ...

As Millions Suffer, Congress Awards BOP $356 Million for New Kansas Prison

As millions of Americans suffer economic pain from the coronavirus pandemic, it’s business as usual for fat cat lawmakers who continue to reveal how out of touch and indifferent they are to the lives of their constituents.

The irony was apparently lost on Senator Jerry Moran, (R-Kansas), ...

Two-Thirds of Nevada Prisoners Confined in Arizona Private Prison Test Positive for COVID-19

That’s what the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Nevada said in a July 2020 statement criticizing the “outrageous and disturbing” infection of 69.7 percent of Nevada prisoners confined within an Arizona prison operated by Tennessee-based CoreCivic, one of the largest private prison firms in the country.

The novel coronavirus that causes the disease ravaged Arizona like a wildfire in the summer of 2020, with one in five Arizonans testing positive. On a single day, July 18, 2020, the state reported 147 new deaths to COVID-19, versus just nine deaths in Nevada the same day. Arizona has no statewide mask mandate like Nevada’s to combat the pandemic.

Thanks, in part, to a comprehensive testing initiative, just 18 (less than 0.15%) of Nevada’s 12,000-plus state prisoners, as well as 54 guards, had tested positive for COVID-19 by July 2020. But a group of 99 prisoners that the Nevada Department of Corrections (NOOC) sent to CoreCivic’s 1,926-bed Saguaro Correctional Center, in Eloy, Arizona, was not so lucky.

As of July 16, 2020, four CoreCivic staff members and 69 ...

Idaho Arrestees Act Voluntarily When Declining Opportunity to Surrender Contraband Before Entering Jail

by Mark Wilson

On July 15, 2020, the Idaho Supreme Court held that an arrestee acts voluntarily when given an opportunity to surrender contraband before entering jail but chooses to continue possessing it.

On January 20, 2018, Idaho Falls Police arrested Nicole Lyn Gneiting on drug charges. Police felt a ...

Seventh Circuit: Wisconsin Jail Officials’ Response to Detainee’s Suicide Risk Objectively Reasonable

by Mark Wilson

On July 15, 2020, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a lower court’s conclusion that a detainee’s attempted suicide was not caused by objective unreasonableness of jail staff.

Wisconsin police arrested Zachary Pulera during the early morning of April 21, 2012. He ...

Dismissal Not Authorized for Oregon Victim’s Refusal to Comply With Subpoena

by Mark Wilson

The Oregon Court of Appeals reversed a lower court’s dismissal of a criminal proceeding when the victim refused to comply with a subpoena to appear for trial.

Alex David Murray Lorenzo was charged with attempted third-degree assault, constituting domestic violence, for attempting to physically injure his stepfather. ...

Seventh Circuit Rejects Retaliation Claim Based on Suspicious Timing Alone

by Mark Wilson

On July 20, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a lower court’s grant of summary judgment on a prisoner’s retaliation claim. The court found that suspicious timing alone is insufficient evidence of retaliatory motive.

Illinois prisoner Elijah Manuel’s disabled cellmate became hostile ...