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Prison Legal News: March, 2006

Issue PDF
Volume 17, Number 3

In this issue:

  1. Federal Court Seizes California Prisons' Medical Care; Appoints Receiver With Unprecedented Powers (p 1)
  2. Ten Deaths At San Quentin from Macabre" Healthcare (p 7)
  3. California Prison Doctor Suspended Following Three Prisoner Deaths (p 9)
  4. From the Editor (p 10)
  5. Los Angeles County Pays $900,000 to Parents of Murdered Informant in Jail (p 10)
  6. NY DOC's 60% Telephone Call Surcharge" Violates First and Fourteenth Amendments (p 11)
  7. Dallas Fake Drug Cases Settle For Millions, Jury Awards Damages (p 12)
  8. Wisconsin Prison Employee Raped By Prisoner Awarded $366,000 (p 13)
  9. New York City Pays $75,000 for 28.5 Days False Imprisonment (p 14)
  10. Supreme Court: Prisoners' ADA Right to Sue for Damages Trumps State's Sovereign Immunity (p 14)
  11. Michigan Jail's Disproportionate Treatment of Women Results in $855,000 Settlement Agreement (p 15)
  12. Texas Legislature Requires HIV Testing for Prisoners (p 16)
  13. Texas Prisoners Again Have Limited Right to Appear in Civil Cases (p 16)
  14. New York City Jail Strip Search Suit Settles For $30 Million (p 17)
  15. Florida Awards $2 Million to Wrongfully Convicted Man (p 17)
  16. California Enacts Strong Sexual Abuse in Detention Elimination" Act (p 18)
  17. Police Department Class Action Fraud Suit Filed Against Stun Gun Maker (p 18)
  18. New Mexico Jail Prisoners Raped by Judge and Guards Settle for $890,000 (p 19)
  19. PLN Questions John Ashcroft on the Death Penalty (p 20)
  20. Wackenhut Settles Pennsylvania Suicide Suit For $125,000 (p 20)
  21. Appointment Of Counsel Ordered To Determine California Prisoner's Request For Post-Appeal DNA Testin (p 21)
  22. Washington Jail Pays Teenager $400,000 for Rape While Imprisoned (p 21)
  23. New York Governor Illegally Halts the Release of 12 Sex Offenders (p 22)
  24. BOP Enjoined from Terminating Boot Camp Program (p 22)
  25. Sixth Circuit Upholds Michigan Ban On Prisoner Appeals of Discretionary Denials of Parole (p 23)
  26. Wrongfully Imprisoned D.C. Disabled Man Settles Suit For $1.74 Million (p 24)
  27. Former Riker's Island Head Goes to Prison (p 24)
  28. $3.6 Million Awarded in Rape and Murder by Erroneously Released NY Prisoner (p 25)
  29. BOP Awards Unisys Corp. Nationwide Prison Phone Contract (p 25)
  30. Federal Government Bans Medicaid Impotence Drugs for Sex Offenders (p 26)
  31. BOP Secret Squirrel Photo File" Suit Remanded (p 26)
  32. New York Jail Prisoner Injured In Assault Awarded $750,000 (p 27)
  33. Rebellion at CCA Prison in Texas (p 27)
  34. Arkansas Juvenile Prisons Cornell Kills a Prisoner, Hires Guard DOC Fired (p 28)
  35. Washington State Forensic Scientist Helps Convict the Innocent, FBI Assists (p 28)
  36. Avalon Correctional Services Delisted From NASDAQ (p 30)
  37. Civil Commitment of Massachusetts Sex Offenders Expanding (p 30)
  38. California Lifer's Understanding of Plea Agreement Does Not Create Entitlement to Parole (p 30)
  39. York County, Maine, Settles Class Action Strip-Search Suit for $3,300,000 (p 31)
  40. Florida DOC's Copy Cost Assessment Rule Declared Invalid (p 31)
  41. New Jersey's Legal Mail Policy Enjoined; Qualified Immunity Granted (p 32)
  42. Michigan Jail Settles Suicide Suit for $280,000 (p 32)
  43. Pre-Trial Defendant Released on Recognizance Is Not Subject to Warrantless Search Without Probable C (p 33)
  44. Los Angeles County Pays Prisoner $42,500 for Legal Malpractice by Public Defender (p 33)
  45. California Pays Innocent Prisoner $328,000 for Nine Years in Prison (p 34)
  46. California DOC Watched Over by Toothless Bureau of Independent Review (p 34)
  47. New Jersey Settles Prisoners Freedom of Religion Suit (p 34)
  48. COPS Program Fails To Arrest Crime, Funding Improprieties (p 35)
  49. Withholding Legal Mail States Legal Access Claim (p 36)
  50. Florida Closes Scandal Ridden Girls Facility, Takes Over Control of Another Juvenile Facility (p 36)
  51. Theft of Prisoners Book by Guards Valid Legal Basis for Texas Civil Suit (p 37)
  52. Nebraska Supreme Court Reverses Dismissal of Prisoners Drug Testing § 1983 Claim (p 37)
  53. Fourth Circuit Reverses $35,934.66 Habeas Fee Award; Habeas Corpus Not Civil Action Under EAJA (p 38)
  54. Court Orders Mob Boss Released from SHU (p 38)
  55. New York Jail Detainee Awarded $233,000 in Damages and Fees for Excessive Force Claim (p 39)
  56. Sixth Circuit PLRA Fee Set at $169.50 Not $135 (p 40)
  57. Qualified Immunity on FRCP 12(b)(6) Motion Faces Formidable Hurdle in Hepatitis Case (p 41)
  58. Washington Settles Prisoners Medical Indifference Suit for $370,000 (p 42)
  59. News in Brief (p 42)
  60. Ninth Circuit Reverses Dismissal of ADA Suit for Failure to Exhaust (p 44)

Federal Court Seizes California Prisons' Medical Care; Appoints Receiver With Unprecedented Powers

Federal Court Seizes California Prisons' Medical Care;
Appoints Receiver With Unprecedented Powers

by Marvin Mentor

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) is forcefully having its failed healthcare system both corrected and rehabilitated. Despite court-ordered healthcare remediation and monitoring over the past 25 years, CDCR's performance continued to ...

Ten Deaths At San Quentin from Macabre" Healthcare

Ten Deaths At San Quentin from Macabre" Healthcare

by Marvin Mentor

San Quentin State Prison (SQ), a scant 25 miles from the San Francisco courtroom of Plata v. Schwarzenegger Judge Thelton E. Henderson, was high on the court's agenda for improved medical care. [See related story, p.1.] In ...

California Prison Doctor Suspended Following Three Prisoner Deaths

by Marvin Mentor

A San Quentin State Prison physician, Dr. Garen Vong, whose alleged negligence contributed to the deaths of three prisoner patients since 2002, was suspended with pay ($11,381 per month) on February 3, 2005 pending investigation. The three preventable" prisoner deaths were part of the incompetence and ...

From the Editor

by Paul Wright

Sometimes I am asked what PLN does, besides publish a magazine. The answer is quite a lot and we are going to try to do a better job of letting people know about it.

In addition to publishing PLN we also have a top notch website that ...

Los Angeles County Pays $900,000 to Parents of Murdered Informant in Jail

The County of Los Angeles (L.A.) agreed to pay $700,000 to the mother, and $200,000 to the father, of a 20 year old county jail prisoner murdered in his cell by a free-roaming prisoner against whom he had just testified in a murder trial.

Raul Tinajero, a ...

NY DOC's 60% Telephone Call Surcharge" Violates First and Fourteenth Amendments

NY DOC's 60% Telephone Call Surcharge" Violates First and Fourteenth Amendments

by John E. Dannenberg

The U.S. District Court (S.D. N.Y.) ruled that the 60% surcharge (kickback) that the New York State Department of Corrections (NYDOC) receives from MCI, Inc. for the privilege of MCI being ...

Dallas Fake Drug Cases Settle For Millions, Jury Awards Damages

by Michael Rigby

In 2001, police officers in Dallas, Texas, made 33 arrests in what has since become known as the fake drug scandal." The victims were all charged with possessing cocaine, based on supposedly positive field tests of seized substances, when in fact there was little or no trace ...

Wisconsin Prison Employee Raped By Prisoner Awarded $366,000

On April 8, 2005, a federal jury awarded $366,000 to a Wisconsin prison employee who was raped by a prisoner.

The 51-year-old female plaintiff, a non-security employee of the Wisconsin Department of Corrections was raped by a knife-wielding prisoner on December 28, 2001. Eight days prior to the attack ...

New York City Pays $75,000 for 28.5 Days False Imprisonment

On September 8, 2005, the City of New York, New York, settled for $75,000 a prisoner's lawsuit alleging 28.5 days false imprisonment.

Plaintiff William Perocier, Jr., a 31 year old tow truck driver, was sentenced to six months in jail in early 2001 for failure to pay ...

Supreme Court: Prisoners' ADA Right to Sue for Damages Trumps State's Sovereign Immunity

by John E. Dannenberg

The United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the private cause of action created by the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) (42 U.S.C. § 12131 et seq.), which permits disabled state prisoners to sue prison officials for damages resulting from violation of prisoners' Constitutional rights ...

Michigan Jail's Disproportionate Treatment of Women Results in $855,000 Settlement Agreement

A Michigan federal district court has approved a settlement awarding $855,000 in a class action alleging the conditions of confinement for women at the Livingston County Jail were disproportionate to that of men held at the jail. The suit also involved privacy concerns.

The suit was brought initially filed ...

Texas Legislature Requires HIV Testing for Prisoners

Texas prisoners must now be tested for HIV before they are allowed to leave prison. Rep. Yvonne Davis, D-Dallas, authored House Bill 43 which was signed on June 19, 2005, by Gov. Pick Perry, and went into effect on September 1st. The bill is based on the paranoid position that ...

Texas Prisoners Again Have Limited Right to Appear in Civil Cases

by Matthew T. Clarke

In a well-reasoned opinion with copious citations, a Texas court of appeals held that Texas prisoners have a limited right to appear in civil cases even if they cannot justify a personal appearance.

C.J., a Texas state prisoner, and D.J. adopted D.D.J ...

New York City Jail Strip Search Suit Settles For $30 Million

by John E. Dannenberg

On April 27, 2005, the City of New York agreed to settle a federal court class action 42 U.S.C. § 1983 civil rights suit with 57,634 past misdemeanant prisoners at its city jails, paying $750 to each person unlawfully strip-searched upon their post-arraignment jail ...

Florida Awards $2 Million to Wrongfully Convicted Man

At its special session in December 2005, the Florida Legislature passed a bill to pay 44-year-old Wilton Dedge $2 million as compensation for a rape he did not commit. Dedge spent 22 years in Florida prisons for the sexual assault and stabbing of a 17-year-old Brevard County girl.

After a ...

California Enacts Strong Sexual Abuse in Detention Elimination" Act

California Enacts Strong Sexual Abuse in Detention Elimination" Act

by John E. Dannenberg

To aid compliance with the federal Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) of 2003 (Public Law 108-79), California enacted Assembly Bill 550 (AB 550), the Sexual Abuse in Detention Elimination Act (SADEA), on September 22, 2005. SADEA provides ...

Police Department Class Action Fraud Suit Filed Against Stun Gun Maker

by John E. Dannenberg

A class action lawsuit against Taser International, Inc., the Arizona-based manufacturer of police stun guns, was filed on July 18, 2005 in Chicago U.S. District Court on behalf of the Dolton, Illinois police department (DPD), alleging breach of contract, breach of warranty and unjust enrichment ...

New Mexico Jail Prisoners Raped by Judge and Guards Settle for $890,000

On June 3, 2004, ten female prisoners who were allegedly raped by a New Mexico judge and jail guards settled their lawsuit for $890,000.

The plaintiffs, who had been confined in the Española City Jail, claimed municipal judge Charles Maestas raped them after they appeared in his courtroom. The ...

PLN Questions John Ashcroft on the Death Penalty

by Alex Friedmann

On Feb. 13, 2006, former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft gave a presentation in favor of the death penalty at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee as part of the school's Project Dialog series. The series' theme for 2006 was Crime and The Ultimate Punishment.
Ashcroft ...

Wackenhut Settles Pennsylvania Suicide Suit For $125,000

On May 11, 2005, Wackenhut Corrections Corporation (now known as Geo Group) agreed to settle for $125,000 a lawsuit arising from the suicide death of a prisoner in the Wackenhut-operated George W. Hill Correctional Facility, also known as the Delaware County prison.

John William Focht, Jr. was arrested in ...

Appointment Of Counsel Ordered To Determine California Prisoner's Request For Post-Appeal DNA Testin

Appointment Of Counsel Ordered To Determine California Prisoner's Request For Post-Appeal DNA Testing

In a case of first impression, the California Court of Appeal strictly construed Penal Code § 1405 to require that the Superior Court appoint a prisoner counsel to determine the appropriateness of performing post-appeal DNA testing and ...

Washington Jail Pays Teenager $400,000 for Rape While Imprisoned

Washington's Franklin County has paid $400,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by a former pretrial detainee who was raped in the Franklin County Correctional Center (FCCC) by another detainee. The civil rights claim brought in a Washington federal court alleged failure to protect.

After he was arrested on ...

New York Governor Illegally Halts the Release of 12 Sex Offenders

by Gary Hunter

New York Governor George Pataki illegally ordered twelve sex offenders, scheduled for release from prison, to be committed to New York's Manhattan Psychiatric Center (MPC), between September 23 and October 21, 2005. On November 2, 2005 New York Supreme Court Justice Jacqueline Silbermann granted the petitioner ...

BOP Enjoined from Terminating Boot Camp Program

A Massachusetts federal district court has entered a preliminary injunction against the Bureau of Prisons (BOP), enjoining it from terminating its boot camp" incarceration program, pending compliance with the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), and requiring good faith consideration of the plaintiff for inclusion in the program.

The plaintiff, Richard Castellini ...

Sixth Circuit Upholds Michigan Ban On Prisoner Appeals of Discretionary Denials of Parole

The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upheld Michigan's lately revised statute that forecloses state prisoners from challenging discretionary denials of parole. Because the former availability of such a challenge had led to thousands of mostly unsuccessful suits, the Sixth Circuit accepted the state's argument that saving ...

Wrongfully Imprisoned D.C. Disabled Man Settles Suit For $1.74 Million

by Michael Rigby

The District of Columbia and a private medical provider have agreed to pay $1.74 million to Joseph Heard, a deaf, mute, and mentally disabled man who was wrongfully imprisoned in the D.C. jail for nearly two years.

Heard's ordeal [originally reported in PLN, April ...

Former Riker's Island Head Goes to Prison

Matthew T. Clarke

In March 2005, Anthony Serra, formerly the second-in-command of the New York City corrections department and top official at Rikers Island Jail, pleaded guilty to state and federal charges. He was subsequently sentenced to a year in prison. As previously reported in the August 2003 and January ...

$3.6 Million Awarded in Rape and Murder by Erroneously Released NY Prisoner

The New York Court of Claims awarded $3,621,632 to the estate of a woman who was raped and murdered by a prisoner who was mistakenly released early. The court also awarded $1,950,000 to another woman who was raped and severely beaten by the offender. Fault was ...

BOP Awards Unisys Corp. Nationwide Prison Phone Contract

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) contracted with Unisys Corp. (Bluebell, Pennsylvania) to install new telephone systems in over 110 BOP prisons nationwide. The September 14, 2005 contract awards $37 million for the first three years, expandable in three one-year options to a total of $96 million.

Under ...

Federal Government Bans Medicaid Impotence Drugs for Sex Offenders

The U.S. Government has ordered states to ensure convicted sex offenders do not receive reimbursement for erectile dysfunction drugs under Medicaid or Medicare.

A New York audit showed 198 sex offenders received such drugs through the state/federal health-care program for the poor and elderly since 2000. Shortly thereafter ...

BOP Secret Squirrel Photo File" Suit Remanded

BOP Secret Squirrel Photo File" Suit Remanded

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has reinstated a prisoner lawsuit under the federal Privacy Act (Act) at 5 U.S.C. § 552a, et seq. The District Court for the District of Columbia had dismissed the case for ...

New York Jail Prisoner Injured In Assault Awarded $750,000

On July 12, 2005, a New York court awarded $750,000 to a prisoner who suffered ankle and face injuries when he was beaten by other prisoners.
While imprisoned at Rikers Island in Queens on February 12, 1995, Joshua Torres, 17, was confronted by another prisoner who demanded his sneakers ...

Rebellion at CCA Prison in Texas

On August 27, 2005, a riot involving hundreds of prisoners broke out in a private prison run by Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) in Mineral Wells, Texas, injuring a dozen prisoners and two guards. The sixteen-year-old, 2,100-bed facility holds prisoners with less than a year to serve before their ...

Arkansas Juvenile Prisons Cornell Kills a Prisoner, Hires Guard DOC Fired

by Matthew T. Clarke

Arkansas paid Cornell Corporations of Houston, Texas, $9.5 million a year to manage the Alexander Youth Services Center in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. What they got for their money was a prison that killed by medical neglect a juvenile prisoner with a blood clot in her ...

Washington State Forensic Scientist Helps Convict the Innocent, FBI Assists

by Matthew T. Clarke

Washington State Patrol crime lab forensic scientist Charles Vaughan had no problem finding new employment after he helped convict two innocent Oregon State men of murder when he worked as a state forensic scientist in the Oregon State Police crime lab. Indeed, as it now turns ...

Avalon Correctional Services Delisted From NASDAQ

On February 3, 2005, Avalon Correctional Services, Inc., announced that it had filed Form 15 with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to terminate the company's common stock pursuant to the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 (SEA). This allows Avalon to cease filing SEC-required reports, including forms 8-K ...

Civil Commitment of Massachusetts Sex Offenders Expanding

by Michael Rigby

Massachusetts prosecutors are using recent changes in state law to expand the number of sex offenders imprisoned through civil commitment, and it's costing taxpayers millions.

In 2004 and 2005, the Massachusetts legislature and Governor Mitt Romney greatly expanded the pool of sex offenders who could be ...

California Lifer's Understanding of Plea Agreement Does Not Create Entitlement to Parole

In 1984, Peter Honesto committed a murder in the course of kidnapping and robbery, exposing him to California's death penalty or life without parole. He accepted a plea agreement for 17-life for second degree murder. When later repeatedly denied parole, he successfully petitioned the superior court to enforce" the ...

York County, Maine, Settles Class Action Strip-Search Suit for $3,300,000

In April 2005, York County, Maine, agreed to settle for $3,300,000 a class action lawsuit alleging the county maintained an unconstitutional policy of strip-searching all pre-arraignment detainees in the York County Jail regardless of the charge against them.

Plaintiffs Michele Nilsen end Michael Goodrich contended that upon being ...

Florida DOC's Copy Cost Assessment Rule Declared Invalid

by David M. Reutter

Florida's First District Court of Appeal has held the Florida Department of Corrections (FDOC) does not have legislative authority to support its rule regarding the amount prisoners are charged for photographic copying services, authorizing deductions from prisoners' accounts for copying services, and imposing liens on ...

New Jersey's Legal Mail Policy Enjoined; Qualified Immunity Granted

A New Jersey federal district court has held that a prison policy of opening legal mail outside of prisoners' presence is unconstitutional, but that prison officials are entitled to qualified immunity from damages. This civil rights action was brought by New Jersey prisoner's Jamaal W. Allah, Lennie Kirkland, and ...

Michigan Jail Settles Suicide Suit for $280,000

On June 6, 2004, Wayne County, Michigan, agreed to pay $280,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of a county prisoner who committed suicide days after he was attacked by another prisoner.

Jose Perez was arrested on December 27, 2000, and placed in the Wayne County Jail ...

Pre-Trial Defendant Released on Recognizance Is Not Subject to Warrantless Search Without Probable C

Pre-Trial Defendant Released on Recognizance Is Not Subject to Warrantless Search Without Probable Cause

by John E. Dannenberg

In a case of national first impression, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held that when a pre-trial (drug-offense) detainee accepted court release on his own recognizance (OR) that was ...

Los Angeles County Pays Prisoner $42,500 for Legal Malpractice by Public Defender

by John E. Dannenberg

The County of Los Angeles paid $42,500 to settle a legal malpractice claim brought by a prisoner who suffered state prison plus felony disenfranchisement upon an unlawful conviction.

In October 1992, Jose Castro, represented by the Public Defender, pled guilty to statutory rape (California Penal ...

California Pays Innocent Prisoner $328,000 for Nine Years in Prison

by John E. Dannenberg

For only the twelfth time since 1981, California paid a wrongfully imprisoned person for his troubles. After serving nine years of a 27-life 1995 sentence for rape, a 38 year-old man was recently awarded $328,000 $100 for each day in prison.

Peter Rose was convicted ...

California DOC Watched Over by Toothless Bureau of Independent Review

While Californias $7.4 billion Department of Corrections and
Rehabilitation (CDCR) continues to report solely to the Governors Secretary of Corrections, the CDCR is also being overseen by the Bureau of Independent Review (BIR), reporting to the Governor. The good news is that some prison employees misdeeds are now being ...

New Jersey Settles Prisoners Freedom of Religion Suit

New Jersey Settles Prisoners Freedom of Religion Suit

On November 14, 2005, the state of New Jersey settled a prisoners civil rights lawsuit by paying him $2,000 and allowing him to practice the Wicca religion and to receive related literature and artifacts.

Patrick Pantusco converted to the Wicca religion ...

COPS Program Fails To Arrest Crime, Funding Improprieties

by Michael Rigby

Police chiefs and politicians across the nation have hailed the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program as largely responsible for the sharp drop in crime that began in the mid-1990s, USA Today recently reported. But now--10 years and $10 billion later--a more accurate and far less flattering ...

Withholding Legal Mail States Legal Access Claim

by Bob Williams

The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit has held that withholding legal mail while a prisoner is out to court states a colorable claim for denial of legal access because it impedes efforts to pursue litigation.

Kansas state prisoner Willie Simkins was transferred from ...

Florida Closes Scandal Ridden Girls Facility, Takes Over Control of Another Juvenile Facility

Only five years after it was opened, legislators have shut down the scandal ridden Florida Institute for Girls (FIG) built at a cost of $7.9 million, FIG will remain empty until Floridas Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) decides if they can use it for another program. It will cost ...

Theft of Prisoners Book by Guards Valid Legal Basis for Texas Civil Suit

Theft of Prisoners Book by Guards Valid Legal Basis for Texas Civil Suit

A Texas court of appeals has held that a claim that two Texas state prison guards removed a law book from a prisoners cell and neither returned the book nor turned it over to the prisons inmate ...

Nebraska Supreme Court Reverses Dismissal of Prisoners Drug Testing § 1983 Claim

Nebraska Supreme Court Reverses Dismissal of Prisoners Drug Testing § 1983 Claim

The Nebraska Supreme Court reversed a lower courts dismissal of a prisoners 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action, finding that he stated a cognizable claim for relief and sufficiently pleaded exhaustion of administrative remedies as required by 42 U ...

Fourth Circuit Reverses $35,934.66 Habeas Fee Award; Habeas Corpus Not Civil Action Under EAJA

Fourth Circuit Reverses $35,934.66 Habeas Fee Award; Habeas Corpus Not Civil Action Under EAJA

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a district courts award of $35,934.66 in attorneys fees, costs, and expenses under the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA), in a federal habeas corpus ...

Court Orders Mob Boss Released from SHU

A New York federal district court has ordered a federal pretrial detainee released from administrative detention into general population because the government had other means of preventing him from communicating with the members of his crime family.

Vincent Basciano moved pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 and the Bail ...

New York Jail Detainee Awarded $233,000 in Damages and Fees for Excessive Force Claim

by David M. Reutter

A New York federal district court reduced a jurys damage award in a prisoners civil rights action alleging excessive force by guards. The total award came to $165,000 and $68,000 in attorney fees and costs.
This action was brought against New Yorks Nassau County ...

Sixth Circuit PLRA Fee Set at $169.50 Not $135

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals joined the Ninth Circuit in holding that the maximum allowable attorney fees under the [Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA)] should be based on the amounts authorized by the Judicial Conference, not the amount actually paid to the court-appointed council under the CJA. That is ...

Qualified Immunity on FRCP 12(b)(6) Motion Faces Formidable Hurdle in Hepatitis Case

Qualified Immunity on FRCP 12(b)(6) Motion Faces Formidable Hurdle in Hepatitis Case

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower courts denial of a Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, asserting a qualified immunity defense. The court held that a qualified immunity defense ...

Washington Settles Prisoners Medical Indifference Suit for $370,000

Washington Settles Prisoners Medical Indifference Suit for $370,000

by Michael Rigby

In October 2005, the State of Washington settled for $370,000 a prisoners federal lawsuit in which he alleged that indifferent medical treatment proximately resulted in a stroke that left him permanently disabled. The settlement was reached after ...

News in Brief

News in Brief:

Alabama: On March 2, 2005, Ellis Hudson, 40, was arrested on trespassing charges for breaking into the Bullock County jail in Union Springs. Hudson was apparently trying to smuggle tobacco to jail prisoners, which is banned.

Arizona: On March 8, 2006, an unidentified Maricopa county sheriffs deputy ...

Ninth Circuit Reverses Dismissal of ADA Suit for Failure to Exhaust

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a district court erred in dismissing a California prisoners suit for failing to exhaust administrative remedies under 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a) of the Prison Litigation Reform Act, (PLRA).

Earl Butler, a blind prisoner, was confined at the California Substance Abuse ...