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Articles by Matthew Clarke

Report: JailCore Left Prisoners’ Data Unprotected Online

by Matt Clarke

On February 10, 2020, cybersecurity research team vpnMentor reported the discovery of an unsecured cloud storage server containing data from JailCore, an online management and compliance application used by jails to streamline functions like logging prisoner checks. While some of the information generated is public, other information ...

Federal Court Allows Lawsuit Over Sexual Assault of Female Connecticut Prisoner to Proceed

by Matt Clarke

On October 8, 2019, a federal court denied summary judgment on some claims against seven Connecticut Department of Corrections (DOC) supervisory personnel who Cara Tangreti, a former prisoner at the state’s only women’s prison, alleged placed her in danger of repeated sexual assaults. Four guards were fired ...

California Court of Appeal Upholds Dismissal of Challenge to Excessive Jail Phone Rates as Unconstitutional Tax

by Matt Clarke

On April 28, 2020, a California court of appeal affirmed the judgment of a lower court sustaining the demurrer of nine counties that were sued by jail prisoners and their families as a challenge to excessive jail phone rates as an unconstitutional tax under Proposition 26.

The ...

Texas Attorney General Finds GEO Documents Are Public Information

On May 1, 2020, the Texas Attorney General’s Office issued an opinion holding that all records related to a private prison contractor’s operations in the state were public information subject to the Texas Public Information Act (TPIA). The opinion bars an effort by the GEO Group to ...

Rhode Island Pays $380,419 to Settle Prison Guard Hiring Discrimination Suit

In December 2019, the Providence Journal received a requested breakdown of money paid to applicants for prison guard positions with the Rhode Island Department of Corrections (DOC). The DOC sent a spreadsheet of 251 payments of between $286.63 and $3,096.36, totaling $380,419.

The money was part of ...

Connecticut City Settles Suit Over Prisoner’s Suicide for $1,393,000

On December 10, 2019, the City of Meriden, Connecticut, settled for $1,393,000 a lawsuit brought by the estate, minor son, and minor daughter of a woman who committed suicide while being held at the Meriden Police Department.

Late in the evening of January 18, 2016, Meriden city ...

Company Hawking Prison Phone Monitoring Technology as Way to Discover Coronavirus Infections

A Los Angeles-based company has been selling to jails and prison systems phone-monitoring technology that searches for keywords, touting it as a way to discover COVID-19 infections early.

LEO Technologies developed the Verus system, which has already been deployed in at least 26 facilities in 11 states, ...

$200,000 Awarded to Missouri Prison Guard Over Sexual Harassment, Retaliation

On October 3, 2019, a Missouri jury entered judgment in favor of a former Missouri Department of Corrections (DOC) employee who alleged she had suffered workplace sexual harassment, gender discrimination, and retaliation. The jury awarded her $200,000 in compensatory damages.

Ana Barrios was hired by the DOC ...

Nebraska Prison Employee Labor Agreement Contains Unusual Provision

On December 27, 2019, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts and the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 88, the union that represents Nebraska Department of Corrections (DOC) workers, announced a “Letter of Agreement” that provides for increased worker pay and creates a new career ladder for DOC guards.

The ...

$500,000 Settlement From Psychiatrist for Failing to Treat New Mexico Prisoner Who Committed Suicide

In November 2019, the family of a New Mexico prisoner who committed suicide while incarcerated at a privately operated prison agreed to a $500,000 settlement against the psychiatrist, Andrew Kowalkowski, who subcontracted with Corizon. Earlier in 2019, the family entered into confidential settlements with the two other ...