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Prison Legal News: September, 2002

Issue PDF
Volume 13, Number 9

In this issue:

  1. Boot Camp or Boot Hill? Troubled Teens Suffer From Too Much Tough Love (p 1)
  2. Audit Shows Folsom Prison Mismanaged (p 7)
  3. From the Editor (p 8)
  4. From the Editor (p 9)
  5. Sixth Circuit Rules PLRA 150% Fee Cap Constitutional (p 10)
  6. California Prisoners Remanded to Jail for Resentencing Do Not Accrue Jail Behavior Credits (p 11)
  7. California Prisoner Gets New Heart (p 12)
  8. BOP Prisoner Awarded $900 in Van Accident (p 13)
  9. 7-up To Pull TV Ad Under Pressure from Human Rights Groups (p 13)
  10. Lessons From the Law (p 14)
  11. The High Cost of Prosecuting Capital Crimes (p 14)
  12. Girls Sue Alabama Juvenile Prison for Abuse (p 15)
  13. CYA Suit Alleges Abuse of Juveniles (p 16)
  14. U.S. Supreme Court: No Death Penalty for Retarded; Juries Must Impose Death Sentence (p 17)
  15. PLRA Allows California Religious Preliminary Injunction (p 18)
  16. Georgia Prison Guards Caught in Bondage Videos (p 18)
  17. Connecticut Retroactive Application of 85% Rule Violates Ex-Post Facto (p 19)
  18. Then They Came for the Lawyers: The Persecution of Lynne Stewart (p 20)
  19. Supreme Court: "Reasonable Attempt" Suffices Absent Actual Notice of Forfeiture (p 21)
  20. 9-11 Prompts New Regulations for Prisoner Airline Transports (p 22)
  21. Washington Prisoners Sue DOC for Extortion, Mail Fraud, Criminal Profiteering and Racketeering (p 22)
  22. Louisiana's Administrative Remedy Procedure Unconstitutional (p 23)
  23. Hemorrhoids: A Serious Medical Condition (p 24)
  24. Massachusetts Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Prisoner PAC (p 24)
  25. Multiple Prisoners Proceeding IFP Must Pay Separate Filing Fees (p 25)
  26. Ohio District Court Grants TRO on Grooming Regulations (p 25)
  27. Disputed Material Facts in Failure to Protect Suit Preclude Interlocutory Appellate Review (p 26)
  28. Microsoft Demands $1.5 Million from Texas Prison System for Software Violations (p 26)
  29. No Qualified Immunity for Guards Who Failed to Provide CPR (p 27)
  30. $287,500 Awarded in Texas Jail Rape (p 27)
  31. Florida Guard's Threat of Death Requires Summary Judgment Denial (p 28)
  32. Dental Care Denial Defeats Summary Judgment (p 28)
  33. Washington Sex Offender Therapist Fired for Sex Related Misconduct (p 29)
  34. News in Brief (p 30)
  35. Death Row Prisoners Volunteer to Die (p 32)
  36. Review: The Criminal Law Handbook, 3rd Edition (p 32)

Boot Camp or Boot Hill? Troubled Teens Suffer From Too Much Tough Love

Boot Camp Or Boot Hill? Troubled Teens Suffer From Too Much Tough Love

by Roger Hummel

On February 15, 2002, Charles Long II was arrested on murder and child abuse charges growing from the death of Anthony Haynes. On July 1, 2001 the 14 year old Haynes died while attending ...

Audit Shows Folsom Prison Mismanaged

In December 2001, the state inspector general concluded an excoriating audit of a city-run prison in Folsom, California. The audit was the result of a six-month investigation that met a great deal of resistance from Folsom officials. It "revealed deteriorating buildings, broken equipment, lax supervision of inmates, visitors and volunteers ...

From the Editor

Over the years, PLN has conducted a number of sample mailings to potential subscribers. This has always been a good way to expand our circulation, but such mailings are expensive to do. We have long recognized that our best outreach resource is our readership. To that end, we want to ...

From the Editor

by Paul Wright

Over the years, PLN has conducted a number of sample mailings to potential subscribers. This has always been a good way to expand our circulation, but such mailings are expensive to do. We have long recognized that our best outreach resource is our readership. To that end ...

Sixth Circuit Rules PLRA 150% Fee Cap Constitutional

by Matthew T. Clarke

The Sixth Circuit court of appeals has held that 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(d)(2), the section of the Prison Litigation Reform Act, which limits losing civil rights defendants' liability to 150% of the damage award, did not violate the Equal Protection component of the ...

California Prisoners Remanded to Jail for Resentencing Do Not Accrue Jail Behavior Credits

California Prisoners Remanded To Jail For Resentencing Do Not Accrue Jail Behavior Credits

For the narrow question of which behavior credits apply to a state prisoner remanded to county jail solely for resentencing, the California Supreme Court ruled that because he was still a convicted prisoner and not a pre-trial ...

California Prisoner Gets New Heart

In early January 2002, an unidentified California prisoner received a heart transplant at the Stanford Medical Center. It was the first time any state prisoner has received an organ transplant; and it is not without controversy. Inflated prison populations, longer prison sentences, and an aging prison population make prisoner health ...

BOP Prisoner Awarded $900 in Van Accident

A federal district court in Illinois held that Chong Won Tai, a federal prisoner, was injured due to negligence by the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and awarded Tai $900 in damages. Tai was injured while being transported from one prison to another in a BOP van when the van was ...

7-up To Pull TV Ad Under Pressure from Human Rights Groups

Under pressure from Stop Prisoner Rape, a nonprofit human rights organization, and nearly 100 other human rights, HIV/AIDS, prisoner rights, and sexual violence organizations, Dr. Pepper/Seven Up, Inc. has decided to stop airing a national television commercial that makes light of rape in prison.

The commercial, created by ...

Lessons From the Law

by Mumia Abu Jamal

For many jailhouse lawyers, the texts of court rulings are read with a close and rapt attention that would be the envy of any conscientious law professor. The writer knows one guy, who, after years of study of criminal law cases, can recite from sheer memory ...

The High Cost of Prosecuting Capital Crimes

As many local governments are discovering, there is a new twist on an old saying: Nothing is certain except the death penalty and higher taxesand the high cost of capital punishment.

Quitman County in Mississippi raised taxes three times in the 1990s and took out a $150,000 loan to ...

Girls Sue Alabama Juvenile Prison for Abuse

Five girls who were incarcerated at the Chalkville juvenile lockup in Alabama have filed a massive $171 million lawsuit against the agency that runs the jail, the Department of Youth Services (DYS). The suit charges, among other things, that the girls were the victims of repeated and routine sexual abuse ...

CYA Suit Alleges Abuse of Juveniles

The California Youth Authority (CYA) houses 6,000 juvenile offenders and was once considered a model for juvenile justice in this country. However, after decades of declining funding and worsening conditions, the California Youth Authority has deteriorated to where severely mentally ill juveniles go untreated, teachers do not show up ...

U.S. Supreme Court: No Death Penalty for Retarded; Juries Must Impose Death Sentence

June was a good month for many death row prisoners. In Ring v. Arizona , 122 S.Ct. 2428 (2002) and Atkins v. Virginia , 122 S.Ct. 2242 (2002), the Supreme Court placed new and significant limitations on the death penalty. These decisions could affect hundreds of prisoners.

In Atkins , the ...

PLRA Allows California Religious Preliminary Injunction

by David M. Reutter

The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has upheld the grant of a preliminary injunction to California Muslim prisoners .See: Mayweathers v. Terhune, 136 F. Supp. 2d 1152 (E.D. Cal. 2001). Prison officials appealed the injunction arguing that: the prisoners lacked standing; the district ...

Georgia Prison Guards Caught in Bondage Videos

More than 150 law enforcement officers from various Georgia agencies including the Department of Corrections, have been moonlighting as actors in gay bondage videotapes since 1980. Sold over the internet, the tapes include scenes of kidnapping and torture.

In November 1999, Hays State prison guards Roy Utt and Lt. Joe ...

Connecticut Retroactive Application of 85% Rule Violates Ex-Post Facto

The Connecticut Supreme Court has decided that retroactive application of a State law raising the time for parole eligibility from 50% to 85% of time served violates the ex post facto clause of the U.S. Constitution. The court further found that the law in question was not intended to ...

Then They Came for the Lawyers: The Persecution of Lynne Stewart

On April 9, 2002, in a chilling first application of the USA-Patriot Act (pushed into law after 9-11), the U.S. government indicted attorney Lynne Stewart along with three Arab men, Mohammed Yousry, Ahmed Abdel Sattar, and Yassir Al-Sirri. Lynne Stewart is the lawyer for Islamic cleric Omar Abdel Rahman ...

Supreme Court: "Reasonable Attempt" Suffices Absent Actual Notice of Forfeiture

by John E. Dannenberg

The US Supreme Court held that due process of law was satisfied when a reasonable attempt was made to serve a federal prisoner with a statutory notice of administrative forfeiture of his property, even though he never received that notice.

Larry Dusenberry was arrested in April ...

9-11 Prompts New Regulations for Prisoner Airline Transports

Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) transferred its rulemaking authority regarding civil aviation security to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). The TSA subsequently promulgated new rules regarding the transportation of prisoners on civilian airlines.

The new regulation, 49 C.F.R. § 1544.221, effective ...

Washington Prisoners Sue DOC for Extortion, Mail Fraud, Criminal Profiteering and Racketeering

Four Washington state prisoners have filed suit against the Department of Corrections (DOC) over DOC's longstanding practice of charging prisoners to ship their own personal property when they are transferred from one institution to another, and doing so under the threat that their property would be destroyed if they ...

Louisiana's Administrative Remedy Procedure Unconstitutional

by Matthew T. Clarke

The Supreme Court of Louisiana has declared that the Corrections Administrative Remedy Procedure (CARP), La.Rev.Stat. 15:1171-1179, when applied to tort claims, violates article V,16 of the Louisiana constitution.

Michael Wayne Pope, a Louisiana state prisoner, was severely injured on his prison job ...

Hemorrhoids: A Serious Medical Condition

A federal district court in Illinois has denied a motion to dismiss a complaint for the failure to alter treatment for a prisoner's hemorrhoid problem. Prisoner Brian Jones brought a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action against six medical doctors at Illinois' Stateville and Joliet Correctional Centers. The defendants ...

Massachusetts Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Prisoner PAC

The Massachusetts Supreme Court has upheld summary judgment against the Massachusetts Prisoners Association Political Action Committee (MPAPAC). The court also upheld disciplinary sanctions by the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (DOC) against MPAPAC cofounder Michael Shea. The ruling largely destroys MPAPAC.

Shea, four other DOC prisoners, and Sandra Currie, a free ...

Multiple Prisoners Proceeding IFP Must Pay Separate Filing Fees

The Eleventh Circuit US Court of Appeals held that multiple prisoners, when asserting in forma pauperis (IFP) status in a federal civil rights action, cannot join their claims to pro-rate a single filing fee among all the plaintiffs.

Earnest Hubbard led a group of 18 Alabama prisoners in a pro ...

Ohio District Court Grants TRO on Grooming Regulations

The Federal District Court for the Northern District of Ohio has granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) against Marion Correctional Institution (MCI), Marion, Ohio, preventing Warden Christine Money from enforcing a grooming policy against two Orthodox Chassidic Jews.
Michael Goodman and another Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DORC) prisoner named ...

Disputed Material Facts in Failure to Protect Suit Preclude Interlocutory Appellate Review

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that it is without jurisdiction to hear an interlocutory appeal on qualified immunity issues where material facts are in dispute. The Court of Appeals let stand most of a district court's denial of qualified immunity to Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and ...

Microsoft Demands $1.5 Million from Texas Prison System for Software Violations

Microsoft Corporation, the computer software giant based in Redmond, Washington, has demanded a $1.5 million payment for software "licensing shortfalls." The demand was made on the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ), the agency that operates the state's massive prison and parole system.

In 2001, the TDCJ audited ...

No Qualified Immunity for Guards Who Failed to Provide CPR

No Qualified Immunity for Guards who Failed to Provide CPR

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit struck down a district court's grant of qualified immunity and summary judgment in favor of three Nebraska prison guards who had failed to administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to a ...

$287,500 Awarded in Texas Jail Rape

On February 19, 2002, a federal jury in Lubbock, Texas, awarded $287,500 to a former prisoner raped in the Lamb county jail. The plaintiff, who used the pseudonym, J.L., suffers from scoliosis and brain damage. He was serving a 29-day sentence on unspecified charges. J.L. had asked ...

Florida Guard's Threat of Death Requires Summary Judgment Denial

A federal district court in Florida has denied summary judgment to a guard that threatened violence against a prisoner who filed a lawsuit against the guard's brother. While confined at Florida's Liberty Correctional Institution, prisoners Joseph Wilson and David Croft filed a lawsuit against Sgt. Michael Silcox. On ...

Dental Care Denial Defeats Summary Judgment

A federal district court in Illinois has denied summary judgment in a prisoner's denial of dental treatment claim under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments, and expounded on the relations back upon amendment provision of Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(c). While a detainee at the Cook County Jail (CCJ ...

Washington Sex Offender Therapist Fired for Sex Related Misconduct

Thomas Smith is again in hot water over his seemingly endless sexoriented misconduct. On February 12, 2002 he was fired from his therapist position at the Special Commitment Center (SCC) on McNeil Island near Steilacoom, Washington. He had "treated" civilly committed sex predators imprisoned at the SCC since 1999. Smith ...

News in Brief

California: On June 24, 2002, San Francisco prosecutor Floyd Andrews pleaded not guilty to felony assault charges stemming from his stabbing of Martin Stanley when he caught Stanley urinating on a fence in front of his home. Andrews stabbed Stanley seriously enough to expose his intestines and sever part of ...

Death Row Prisoners Volunteer to Die

Late in 1997, Arizona began moving death row prisoners to a super-maximum security facility. There, they are held in small, separate cells for 23 hours a day with almost no interaction with other human beings.

In Florida, prison officials recently added a mesh to the outside of death row cells ...

Review: The Criminal Law Handbook, 3rd Edition

by Paul Bergman and Sara J. Berman-Barrett. Nolo, 606 pages, paperback, $29.95

A sure-fire method to eliminate future overcrowding of our nation's prisons would be to compel each aspiring scofflaw to read the third edition of The Criminal Law Handbook before his or her 18th birthday. If we ...