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Prison Legal News: July, 2018

Issue PDF
Volume 29, Number 7

In this issue:

  1. Litigation Heats Up Over Extreme Temperatures in Prisons, Jails (p 1)
  2. Human Rights Defense Center Files Censorship Suit Against Illinois DOC (p 10)
  3. Fifth Circuit Partially Reinstates Mississippi Prisoner’s Suit Over Inadequate Mental Health Care (p 11)
  4. From the Editor (p 12)
  5. Nebraska Supreme Court Reverses Injunction Against Ban on Prisoner-Prisoner Marriages (p 13)
  6. Lawsuits Filed, Renewed Push to Block Cell Phones After Deadly South Carolina Prison Riot (p 14)
  7. $10,000 Federal Jury Award in Texas Prisoner’s Suit Over Retaliatory Beatings (p 17)
  8. Pennsylvania: SCI Graterford’s Replacement Slated to Open (p 18)
  9. Idaho Prisoner Swallows Razor Blade to Force Corizon to Provide Medical Care (p 19)
  10. The Prison Phone Industry Has Quietly Become Even More of a Duopoly (p 20)
  11. Iowa Settles Religious Discrimination Suit Brought by Incarcerated Odinist (p 21)
  12. “Less Lethal” Tasers Continue to Kill Dozens of Prisoners (p 22)
  13. Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Reports Inaccurate Jail Violence Data (p 24)
  14. Supreme Court Reverses Ninth Circuit Ruling Banning Pretrial Full-body Shackling (p 25)
  15. John Legend Fights for Criminal Justice Reform (p 26)
  16. Census Bureau will Count Incarcerated People in the Wrong Place Once Again in 2020 Census, Continues to Distort Democracy (p 26)
  17. State Criminal Justice Reform Efforts Gaining Traction (p 28)
  18. A&E Reality Show Puts Undercover Volunteers, Hidden Cameras in Jails (p 30)
  19. Settlement in Class-action ADA Suit Against Shasta County, California Jail (p 32)
  20. U.S. Supreme Court: Prevailing Prisoners Must Pay 25 Percent of Damage Awards Towards Attorney Fees (p 33)
  21. The Magnificent Seven (p 34)
  22. Second Circuit Reverses Judgment in Favor of U.S. Citizen Held 3½ Years in Immigration Detention (p 34)
  23. Retaliatory “Rough Ride” by Prison Guards States Eighth Amendment Claim (p 35)
  24. Tennessee Judge Ends Sentence Reductions for Prisoners Who Agree to Sterilization; Receives Reprimand (p 36)
  25. Civil Commitment Used to Imprison Drug Users in Massachusetts (p 38)
  26. Office of Inspector General Finds Abuses at ICE Detention Facilities (p 40)
  27. Illinois: $380,000 Settlement in Lawsuit Over Jail Prisoner Assaulted by Other Prisoners (p 42)
  28. Exonerated Prisoner Awarded $15 Million for Misconduct by Baltimore Police (p 42)
  29. Oregon: Former Clackamas Deputy, Probation Officer Sentenced for Child Rape (p 43)
  30. New Virginia Law Requires Oversight of Jail Deaths (p 44)
  31. Lawsuit on Behalf of Prisoners in 1993 Lucasville Riot Challenges Ban on Media Access (p 44)
  32. Indiana’s SOMM Program Declared Unconstitutional by Federal Court (p 46)
  33. “Egregious” Lack of Care by Jail’s Medical Contractor Leads to $1 Million Settlement (p 46)
  34. Federal Court Nullifies Seizure of Prisoner’s Civil Rights Award (p 48)
  35. North Carolina Prisoner Exonerated for Rape Collects $9.5 Million Settlement (p 48)
  36. Ex-Prisoner Awarded $150,000 after 'Savage Beating' Arranged by Guards (p 49)
  37. Fourth Circuit Reinstates Prisoner’s Lawsuit Over Denial of Rastafarian Services (p 50)
  38. Wrongfully Convicted North Carolina Man Receives $4 Million (p 50)
  39. Florida: DHS Snitch Busted for Trying to Sell Informant Status to Federal Prisoner (p 51)
  40. $550,000 Settlement for Georgia Prisoner Who Lost Leg Due to Improper Care (p 52)
  41. BOP Director Resigns in Protest of Prison Reform Bill Clash (p 52)
  42. Texas Prisons Stop Using Solitary Confinement as Punishment, but Thousands Kept in Administrative Segregation (p 53)
  43. Confidential Settlement by Corizon in Arizona Prisoner’s Death from Untreated Flu (p 54)
  44. Fifth Circuit Holds Denial of Diabetic Diet During Lockdowns States Claim (p 54)
  45. Settlement Ends Forced Religious Classes in Tennessee Prison Industry Program (p 55)
  46. Lawsuit Filed in Death of Kentucky Prisoner Held in Five-point Restraints (p 56)
  47. Michigan Jail Wrongful Death Suit Settles for $500,000 (p 56)
  48. Troubles at California Jail Lead Sheriff to Forgo Reelection (p 57)
  49. Wisconsin Paid Former Prison Employees $105,000 to Settle Harassment Cases (p 58)
  50. Virginia Parole Board Changes “Three-Strikes” Interpretation (p 58)
  51. Nevada DOC Settles Suit Over Prisoner Suicide for $93,000 (p 59)
  52. $9 Million Settlement for Illinois Man Wrongly Imprisoned for Murder (p 60)
  53. ACLU Reaches Confidential Settlement in CIA Detainee Torture Lawsuit (p 60)
  54. UK Court Blocks Extradition of Accused Hacker to United States (p 61)
  55. News in Brief (p 62)
  56. California: Whistle-blowing Prison Employee Fired, Loses Lawsuit (p 62)

Litigation Heats Up Over Extreme Temperatures in Prisons, Jails

by Matt Clarke and Christopher Zoukis

During a heat wave in the summer of 2017, dozens of protesters gathered outside the Medium Security Institution in St. Louis, Missouri and chanted “shut it down,” after a video showing prisoners at the jail begging for relief from soaring temperatures went viral. But in Texas and elsewhere, prisoners have taken their complaints of extreme – and sometimes deadly – heat to court.

Under a 1977 Texas statute, county jails must keep interior temperatures between 65 and 85 degrees. But over 70 percent of Texas’ 141,000 state prisoners are held in facilities that lack air conditioning, and Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) spokesman Jason Clark said prison officials would not consider retrofitting those facilities with climate control, as that would be “extremely expensive.” Of the state’s 105 prisons, only 30 are fully air-conditioned.

The TDCJ pointed to a study indicating the cost of retrofitting just four prisons with AC would run about $350 million – an amount that exceeded the construction costs for four of the state’s 2,500-bed maximum-security facilities. Yet the TDCJ has managed to air condition administrative areas in its older prisons to ensure the comfort of ...

Human Rights Defense Center Files Censorship Suit Against Illinois DOC

by Derek Gilna

The Human Rights Defense Center (HRDC), the parent organization and publisher of Prison Legal News, filed suit in federal court in Chicago on February 13, 2018, arguing the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) had censored or refused to deliver its publications sent to state prisoners in violation ...

Fifth Circuit Partially Reinstates Mississippi Prisoner’s Suit Over Inadequate Mental Health Care

On September 29, 2017, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated part of a Mississippi state prisoner’s lawsuit complaining of inadequate mental health treatment at the South Mississippi Correctional Institution (SMCI).

Johnny Carl Grogan was incarcerated at SMCI when he allegedly attempted to commit suicide by drug overdose on July ...

From the Editor

by Paul Wright

Each summer there is a wave of heat-related deaths in American prisons, mostly in the southern states of the former confederacy where the government has adopted a policy of explicit cruelty by building prisons without air conditioning to ensure the misery of the caged. This year will ...

Nebraska Supreme Court Reverses Injunction Against Ban on Prisoner-Prisoner Marriages

On September 29, 2017, the Nebraska Supreme Court reversed a state district court’s summary judgment order and grant of injunctive relief that enjoined the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) from denying a marriage ceremony via videoconference to two prisoners who wanted to marry, or enforcing its policy prohibiting such ...

Lawsuits Filed, Renewed Push to Block Cell Phones After Deadly South Carolina Prison Riot

by Steve Horn

In the two months following an April 15, 2018 riot at the Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville, South Carolina that left seven prisoners dead and at least 22 injured, the state’s Department of Corrections (DOC) has renewed its push to get the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to ...

$10,000 Federal Jury Award in Texas Prisoner’s Suit Over Retaliatory Beatings

by Matt Clarke

On June 22, 2017, a federal jury awarded $10,000 to a prisoner against six Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) guards for beating him and issuing false disciplinary reports in retaliation for grievances and previous successful litigation.

Daniel Ostrander, a Texas state prisoner, was held in ...

Pennsylvania: SCI Graterford’s Replacement Slated to Open

State Correctional Institution Phoenix, the $400 million replacement for SCI Graterford in Skipjack Township, Pennsylvania, began accepting prisoners in March 2018. At that time the decade-long project – the second-most costly public building in the state – was already two years behind schedule, with only one-third of its cells finished ...

Idaho Prisoner Swallows Razor Blade to Force Corizon to Provide Medical Care

by Monte McCoin

Jason Monteleone, with the Boise law firm of Johnson and Monteleone, called the medical neglect that his client, Gary L. Merchant, 65, received from Idaho’s prison medical care provider, Corizon Health, “egregious” in a federal lawsuit filed on December 26, 2017.

“The initial medical opinion that’s been ...

The Prison Phone Industry Has Quietly Become Even More of a Duopoly

by Steve Horn

In little-noticed regulatory filings in New York, Maryland, West Virginia, Ohio and Arizona in May 2018, telecom company Securus Technologies solidified its grip over the prison and jail phone service industry by announcing its acquisition of one of its competitors, ICSolutions, also known as ICS. First reported ...

Iowa Settles Religious Discrimination Suit Brought by Incarcerated Odinist

On May 31, 2017, the Iowa Department of Corrections (DOC) settled a lawsuit brought by a state prisoner who alleged religious discrimination against Odinists. The settlement included monetary damages and attorney’s fees, both of which were confidential. It also required the DOC to purchase food and beverages for Odinist ceremonial ...

“Less Lethal” Tasers Continue to Kill Dozens of Prisoners

by Christopher Zoukis

Tasers have become a popular addi­tion on the utility belts of U.S. law enforcement officers. The devices, which fire small darts connected by wires to a stun gun, deliver a jolt of electricity that causes a paralyzing neuromuscular response – basically, they hurt a lot and ...

Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Reports Inaccurate Jail Violence Data

by Ed Lyon

Already rocked by a scandal that put its former sheriff and his top deputy behind bars, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) has come under fire for its inconsistent reporting of violent incidents in the county’s jail system, which is the largest in the nation.

According ...

Supreme Court Reverses Ninth Circuit Ruling Banning Pretrial Full-body Shackling

by Derek Gilna

In an opinion issued May 14, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed a ruling by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that banned the full-body shackling of pretrial detainees, based on the issue of mootness. The decision, authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, noted that the ...

John Legend Fights for Criminal Justice Reform

by Christopher Zoukis

Singer and songwriter John Legend is not just a ten-time Grammy winner. The international superstar is also part of a family that has had several members locked up, including his mother. And he wants to do something “to change the national conversation about our country’s misguided policies ...

Census Bureau will Count Incarcerated People in the Wrong Place Once Again in 2020 Census, Continues to Distort Democracy

On February 7, 2018, the U.S. Census Bureau announced how it will define residence for the 2020 Census. Ignoring overwhelming public support for a change in how incarcerated persons are counted in the Census, the Bureau announced it is leaving in place the inaccurate and outdated practice of counting ...

State Criminal Justice Reform Efforts Gaining Traction

by Christopher Zoukis

On the federal level, hopes for criminal justice reform have fallen victim to partisan bickering in Congress and a lack of substantive interest from the White House. Fortunately, state officials are not waiting around, and state-level reform efforts are underway across the country.

Both houses of the ...

A&E Reality Show Puts Undercover Volunteers, Hidden Cameras in Jails

by Dale Chappell

A group of people who had neither been arrested nor convicted of a crime nevertheless spent two months in county jails – as part of a reality show with hidden cameras, in order to expose the harsh experience of life behind bars.

The revealing program, called “60 ...

Settlement in Class-action ADA Suit Against Shasta County, California Jail

by Derek Gilna

Everett Joseph Jewett, a disabled prisoner held in the medical unit at a jail in Shasta County, California, filed suit in federal court in 2013 alleging the facility had failed to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. § 12101, et seq ...

U.S. Supreme Court: Prevailing Prisoners Must Pay 25 Percent of Damage Awards Towards Attorney Fees

by Derek Gilna

On February 21, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court held, in a 5-4 decision, that when a prisoner wins a monetary judgment in a federal lawsuit and is entitled to attorney fees as the prevailing party, he or she is obligated to pay the first 25 percent ...

The Magnificent Seven

by Mumia Abu-Jamal

They are a cross section of Amer­ican men: Black, white, Greek (apparently), Italian.

Seven men – George R. Efthimiou; Mark Johnson; George T. McHale; John Shnipes, Jr.; Jeffery T. Staff; Paul J. Voglino; and James J. Walsh – seven guards at a county jail in Lackawanna County ...

Second Circuit Reverses Judgment in Favor of U.S. Citizen Held 3½ Years in Immigration Detention

by Matt Clarke

On July 31, 2017, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a judgment for a U.S. citizen who was improperly held in an immigration detention facility for 1,273 days.

Davino Watson was born in Jamaica. When he was 13, he entered the U.S as ...

Retaliatory “Rough Ride” by Prison Guards States Eighth Amendment Claim

by David Reutter

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a Virginia state prisoner had stated a claim for violation of his constitutional rights when guards gave him a “rough ride” in a prison van in retaliation for filing grievances and lawsuits.

Paul C. Thompson was placed in handcuffs ...

Tennessee Judge Ends Sentence Reductions for Prisoners Who Agree to Sterilization; Receives Reprimand

by David Reutter

A Tennessee state court judge has reversed course on a controversial sentence reduction program following an uproar from civil rights and prisoners’ rights advocates. He later received a public letter of reprimand from the Board of Judicial Conduct.

White County General Sessions Judge Sam E. Benningfield, Jr ...

Civil Commitment Used to Imprison Drug Users in Massachusetts

by Ed Lyon

While most states have laws allowing the involuntary civil commitment (ICC) of the mentally ill, some states extend such laws to addicted drug abusers. Massachusetts is the only state to specify by statute that people whose substance abuse problems “pose a serious risk of harm” can be ...

Office of Inspector General Finds Abuses at ICE Detention Facilities

by Christopher Zoukis

A December 11, 2017 report issued by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) harshly criticized Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for serious deficiencies at four immigration detention facilities.

The OIG report arrived just weeks after two non-profit groups, Detention Watch ...

Illinois: $380,000 Settlement in Lawsuit Over Jail Prisoner Assaulted by Other Prisoners

by Matt Clarke

On April 23, 2017, Cook County, Illinois paid $380,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by a woman using the pseudonym “Jane Doe,” who alleged she was repeatedly beaten and sexually assaulted by other prisoners during her 27-day stay at the Cook County jail, while guards ...

Exonerated Prisoner Awarded $15 Million for Misconduct by Baltimore Police

by Derek Gilna

On October 5, 1994, Sabein Burgess’ life changed forever when his girlfriend, Michelle Dyson, was brutally murdered at her home in Baltimore, Maryland. Burgess discovered his girlfriend’s body, called for help and then returned to cradle Dyson’s head in his hands until police officers arrived. As horrible ...

Oregon: Former Clackamas Deputy, Probation Officer Sentenced for Child Rape

by Monte McCoin

On March 23, 2018, Clackamas County Circuit Court Judge Michael Wetzel sentenced a former county deputy and probation officer to 35 years and one month in prison for repeatedly sexually abusing two young girls, separately, between 2004 and 2012.

Gordon Mead, 69, worked as a Clackamas County ...

New Virginia Law Requires Oversight of Jail Deaths

As of May 2018, Virginia’s Board of Corrections (BOC) had counted 21 jail deaths in the state since the start of the year. But thanks to a new law passed in 2017, the BOC now has authority to review deaths in local and regional jails. The statute is a direct ...

Lawsuit on Behalf of Prisoners in 1993 Lucasville Riot Challenges Ban on Media Access

by Ed Lyon

On April 11, 1993, hundreds of prisoners began rioting at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, Ohio. The disturbance lasted eleven days, resulting in the deaths of nine prisoners and one guard. [See: PLN, June 1993, p.9; Dec. 1993, p.7].

Five prisoners were sentenced ...

Indiana’s SOMM Program Declared Unconstitutional by Federal Court

by Dale Chappell

Indiana’s Sex Offender Management and Monitoring (SOMM) program violated the Fifth Amendment by compelling prisoners to incriminate themselves or face longer prison terms, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana held on September 28, 2017.

The ruling was entered in a class-action suit ...

“Egregious” Lack of Care by Jail’s Medical Contractor Leads to $1 Million Settlement

by Dale Chappell

An “egregious” lack of medical treatment that resulted in the death of a jail prisoner led Albany County, New York and its private health care contractor to settle a lawsuit filed by the prisoner’s family for over $1 million.

Mark Cannon died in 2014 after he suffered ...

Federal Court Nullifies Seizure of Prisoner’s Civil Rights Award

On March 29, 2018, a Connecticut federal district court held state officials could not first indemnify a prison guard against whom a prisoner had won a jury award in a civil rights case, then seize the majority of the prisoner’s award for costs of incarceration and various other expenses and ...

North Carolina Prisoner Exonerated for Rape Collects $9.5 Million Settlement

A North Carolina man who served over 25 years in prison before being exonerated for the rape of an elderly woman has received a $9.5 million settlement.

Timothy Scott Bridges was 23 years old when he was arrested by the Charlotte Police Department for the May 1989 rape of ...

Ex-Prisoner Awarded $150,000 after 'Savage Beating' Arranged by Guards

by Dale Chappell

Sussex County, New Jersey, has agreed to pay a former prisoner $150,000 to settle a lawsuit alleging guards at the Keogh-Dwyer Correctional Facility (KDCF) – the county’s jail – put a “hit” on him and had him beaten.

After Robert Woodruff was convicted of burglary and ...

Fourth Circuit Reinstates Prisoner’s Lawsuit Over Denial of Rastafarian Services

by Matthew Clarke

On December 5, 2017, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed in part the dismissal of a prisoner’s lawsuit challenging the denial of Rastafarian group religious services at a North Carolina state prison.

Torrey F. Wilcox is an adherent of the Rastafarian faith incarcerated at the Marion ...

Wrongfully Convicted North Carolina Man Receives $4 Million

A North Carolina man who served 37 years for a double homicide he did not commit has received a $4 million settlement from the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO) in a federal lawsuit.

Joseph Sledge, Jr. became a suspect in the September 5, 1976 murder of Josephine Davis, 74, and ...

Florida: DHS Snitch Busted for Trying to Sell Informant Status to Federal Prisoner

by Monte McCoin

On February 26, 2018, U.S. District Court Judge Darrin P. Gayles sentenced a former confidential informant for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to a year in prison and a year of supervised release for obstructing justice. In exchange for a cash payment, the ...

$550,000 Settlement for Georgia Prisoner Who Lost Leg Due to Improper Care

A diabetic Georgia prisoner received $550,000 to settle a lawsuit claiming he lost one of his legs due to improper medical treatment and neglect by Dr. Chiquita Fye, the medical director at Macon State Prison (MSP).

Michael Tarver, 55, serving a life sentence without parole, was injured while getting ...

BOP Director Resigns in Protest of Prison Reform Bill Clash

by Steve Horn

Mark Inch, director of the federal Bureau of Prisons, resigned on May 18, 2018. At first it was unclear why he stepped down, but The New York Times has since reported that sources told the paper Inch resigned in protest of the role played by U.S ...

Texas Prisons Stop Using Solitary Confinement as Punishment, but Thousands Kept in Administrative Segregation

by Matt Clarke

On September 1, 2017 the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) changed its policy on prisoner discipline to eliminate solitary confinement as a punishment for violating institutional rules, though thousands of prisoners remain in segregation for other reasons.

According to the TDCJ, 76 state prisoners were held ...

Confidential Settlement by Corizon in Arizona Prisoner’s Death from Untreated Flu

For-profit prison and jail medical contractor Corizon Health agreed to an undisclosed settlement after an Arizona prisoner died from the flu that went untreated for six days.

Manuel Diaz, 31, entered the Arizona Department of Corrections in October 2013 to serve a five-year sentence. At the time he was sent ...

Fifth Circuit Holds Denial of Diabetic Diet During Lockdowns States Claim

by Matt Clarke

On January 29, 2018, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals held a diabetic prisoner’s allegation that he was denied a medical diet and required to repeatedly eat high-sugar meals during prison lockdowns stated a claim of deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs sufficient to show a ...

Settlement Ends Forced Religious Classes in Tennessee Prison Industry Program

An employee for TRICOR, Tennessee’s prison industry program, received $80,994 to settle a lawsuit alleging he was forced to teach religious-based classes as part of his duties. The suit alleged First Amendment violations.

Prior to taking a job as the Operations Manager at TRICOR’s wood plant at the Bledsoe ...

Lawsuit Filed in Death of Kentucky Prisoner Held in Five-point Restraints

by Derek Gilna

A wrongful death suit has been filed in state court in Oldham County, Kentucky by the family of 30-year-old Steven Lee McStoots, who died of suffocation when he was strapped face-down on a mattress in five-point restraints at the Kentucky State Reformatory. McStoots had been forcefully removed ...

Michigan Jail Wrongful Death Suit Settles for $500,000

by Christopher Zoukis

A federal lawsuit filed by the widow of a man who died after a violent cell extraction at the Midland County jail in Michigan has settled for $500,000. The Midland Daily News reported the settlement was reached following mediation.

Jack Brian Marden was arrested on February ...

Troubles at California Jail Lead Sheriff to Forgo Reelection

by Derek Gilna

Orange County, California’s jail system has been a hotbed of abuses for many years, accumulating a reputation for lawlessness on the part of prisoners and staff members alike. [See: PLN, June 2018, p.28; Jan. 2016, p.29]. The inability of the current Sheriff-Coroner, Sandra Hutchens, to ...

Wisconsin Paid Former Prison Employees $105,000 to Settle Harassment Cases

by Derek Gilna

Last year, the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (DOC) paid $105,000 to settle a pair of federal civil rights lawsuits filed by two former employees. Both of the women claimed they were fired in retaliation for their testimony alleging sexual harassment by a supervisor at a state ...

Virginia Parole Board Changes “Three-Strikes” Interpretation

by David M. Reutter

Virginia’s parole board is changing a policy under which the state’s “three-strikes” law was used to deny parole to 262 prisoners who previously had never been incarcerated before their current charges. The change came on the heels of an investigative report by the Virginian-Pilot, which found ...

Nevada DOC Settles Suit Over Prisoner Suicide for $93,000

by Matthew Clarke

In June 2017, the Nevada Department of Corrections (DOC) paid $93,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by the parents and wife of a mentally-ill prisoner who committed suicide after his psychiatric needs were ignored by DOC staff.

John William Morse IV, 27, was a Nevada state ...

$9 Million Settlement for Illinois Man Wrongly Imprisoned for Murder

by Matt Clarke

In October 2017, a $9 million settlement was reached in a lawsuit brought by an Illinois man who spent 15 years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit. The suit alleged law enforcement officials fabricated a false murder scenario, coerced false confessions and witness statements, and ...

ACLU Reaches Confidential Settlement in CIA Detainee Torture Lawsuit

by Derek Gilna

Last year, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) entered into a confidential settlement with the CIA over “a torture program” designed and used against military detainees by two contractors, psychologists James Elmer Mitchell and John “Bruce” Jessen.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for ...

UK Court Blocks Extradition of Accused Hacker to United States

by Christopher Zoukis

In a virtually unheard of ruling, a British appellate court has refused to allow a citizen of the United Kingdom to be extradited to the U.S. to face federal charges. The court found that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) would be unable to humanely and adequately ...

News in Brief

Arkansas: On August 7, 2017, for approximately three hours, a group of six prisoners in the Maximum Security Unit at the Tucker facility refused to release three guards they had overpowered and taken hostage by using stolen keys to control the doors in that area of the prison. According to ...

California: Whistle-blowing Prison Employee Fired, Loses Lawsuit

by Ed Lyon

For over two decades, federal courts have been issuing orders, injunctions and sanctions in an effort to force California’s prison system to provide adequate treatment to mentally ill prisoners. That approach does not appear to be working.

Joseph Damien Duran, 35, died on September 7, 2013 at ...