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Articles by Scott Grammer

Organization Connected to Missouri Prison Director Gets No-Bid Contract

by Scott Grammer

Staffing shortages in the Missouri Department of Corrections (MDOC) have been problematic for a number of years, due in part to a high turnover rate fueled by the fact that MDOC employees are among the lowest-paid in the nation, with salaries starting at $28,000 per year ...

Court Orders Changes to Alabama Prison System After 15 Suicides; Feds Threaten Suit

by Scott Grammer

A May 4, 2019 federal district court order in a five-year-old lawsuit over inadequate mental health care and a resultant high suicide rate in Alabama’s prison system was entered “in the wake of 15 inmate suicides in a 15-month period.”

The order stated that the Alabama ...

Department of Justice Report Shows Small Decrease in U.S. Prison Population

by Scott Grammer

A report by Jennifer Bronson, Ph.D. and E. Ann Carson, Ph.D., released by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) in April 2019, found that at the end of 2017, the state and federal prison population had decreased by 1.2 ...

Study Finds that War on Drugs Kept Black Men from Higher Education

by Scott Grammer

In April 2019 study by Universityof California, Berkeley professor Tolani Britton established a link between the so-called “War On Drugs,” embodied in the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986, and college enrollment by black men. Her research found that despite the fact that college enrollment for black ...

California Prisoner Wins $365,000 Settlement for Assault by Jail Guards

by Scott Grammer

On April 18, 2016, Rikki Martinez, 39, was a pretrial detainee at the Elmwood Correctional Facility in Santa Clara, California. According to a complaint filed in federal court, on that day deputies alleged that Martinez had kicked another deputy in the face. As a result, he was ...

Denial of Summary Judgment for Prison Officials Affirmed in West Virginia Excessive Force Case

by Scott Grammer

Miguel Delgado, incarcerated at the Mount Olive Correctional Complex (MOCC), alleged in a civil rights complaint that MOCC Warden David Ballard had authorized policies and procedures that allowed guards to use force against prisoners in the segregation unit without any requirement that they first “make efforts to ...

Author John Grisham Pens Editorial Criticizing Death Penalty in North Carolina

by Scott Grammer

On October 11, 2018, world-famous author and attorney John Grisham published an editorial in a North Carolina newspaper regarding capital punishment in that state.

“Today, there are 141 people on North Carolina’s death row,” Grisham wrote. “By comparison, in Virginia, a state with similar politics, demographics ...

Santa Clara County Jail Captain Accused of Misconduct, Retires

by Scott Grammer

In early June 2019, Captain Amy Le, 51, former president of the Santa Clara County Correctional Peace Officers’ Association, was walked off the sheriff’s office property and placed on paid leave. The reasons for her abrupt departure were not immediately forthcoming; neither sheriff’s officials nor Le would ...

Family of California Prisoner Who Committed Suicide Settles Suit for $595,000

by Scott Grammer

Jason Nishimoto, 44, committed suicide on August 27, 2015 by hanging himself with a bedsheet after being placed in solitary confinement at the Vista Detention Facility (VDF) in San Diego, California.

Nishimoto had been diagnosed as a “high-functioning paranoid schizophrenic” at age 18, and, according to a ...

Tenth Circuit Reverses Dismissal of New Mexico Prisoner’s First Amendment Claims

by Scott Grammer

Monte Whitehead was incarcerated at the Otero County Prison Facility in New Mexico, operated by for-profit contractor Management & Training Corp. (MTC). He filed suit in state court raising various claims under the federal constitution and New Mexico Tort Claims Act, alleging in part “that certain defendants ...