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Part 1: complete case summaries in alphabetical order.

Part 1 presents complete summaries for each case, alphabetically by year published. The major topic section and subtopics are identified before each case summary. This format makes it easier for the reader to review every case. Part 2 presents the summaries under each of the 50 major topic areas.

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Smoke

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Smoke-Free Environment

27. LIABILITY: FTCA-Federal Tort Claims Act, Negligence

29. MEDICAL CARE: Smoke-Free Environment

Abuhouran v. U.S., 595 F.Supp.2d 588 (E.D.Pa. 2009). A prisoner brought a negligence action against the United States under the Federal Tort Claims Act alleging prison officials exposed him to excessive amounts of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). The defendants moved for summary judgment and the district court granted the motion. The court held that the prisoner was precluded, under the discretionary function exception of the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), from challenging the warden's designation of smoking areas, as federal regulations explicitly assigned the exercise of choice or judgment to the warden to designate areas subject to ETS. The court noted that the stated policy considerations for implementing the "no smoking areas" in prisons was to provide a clean air environment and to protect the health and safety of staff and inmates, suggesting the designation of smoking areas was the kind of discretionary function the FTCA exception was meant to shield. The court held that under Pennsylvania law, the prisoner failed to present any medical evidence or expert witnesses to establish a causal connection between his exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and his alleged injury, as required to prevail on his negligence claim. The court also held that the prisoner failed to present any evidence of an actual injury. (Federal Detention Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

7. CIVIL RIGHTS: Military Facility, Aliens

18. FOOD: Involuntary Nourishment

19. FREE SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND ASSOCIATION: Hunger Strike

48. USE OF FORCE: Restraining Chair

Al-Adahi v. Obama, 596 F.Supp.2d 111 (D.D.C. 2009). Aliens who were alleged enemy combatants engaging in voluntary hunger strikes while detained at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, moved to enjoin measures taken as part of a forced-feeding program. The district court denied the motion. The court found that the detainees failed to show a likelihood that they would suffer irreparable harm in the absence of an order enjoining the government from using a restraint-chair in order to facilitate force-feeding them. The court noted that pursuant to the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA), the district court lacked jurisdiction to consider the complaints of detained alleged enemy combatants. According to the court, the government officials who imposed various restraints on the detained alleged enemy combatants, including the use of a restraint chair, in order to facilitate force-feeding them in response to their hunger strikes, were not thereby deliberately indifferent to their Eight Amendment rights. The court found that evidence that the detained alleged enemy combatants had assaulted medical staff and guards during attempts to force-feed them after the detainees engaged in hunger strikes, demonstrated that the government might suffer a substantial injury if the detainees' request for a preliminary injunction against the use of a restraint-chair to facilitate such feedings were granted. (U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba)

24. IMMUNITY: Eleventh Amendment

27. LIABILITY: Contract Services, Policies/Procedures, Respondeat Superior, Vicarious Liability

29. MEDICAL CARE: Contract Services, Inadequate Care

Austin v. Taylor, 604 F.Supp.2d 685 (D.Del. 2009). A state prisoner brought an action alleging a [section] 1983 claim for inadequate medical care in violation of the Eighth Amendment and a state law medical negligence claim against a medical service corporation under contract with the state to provide healthcare services at a prison. The district court dismissed the case in part. The court held that the corporation that provided prison healthcare was not a state actor entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity on the state prisoner's [section] 1983 claim. The court noted that despite having been named in hundreds of [section] 1983 actions, the corporation had never been held to be an arm of the state for Eleventh Amendment purposes. The court noted that the corporation was an autonomous actor and was not immune from state taxation, and any judgment against the corporation would not be paid from the state treasury.

According to the court, although the corporation could not be held liable for allegedly medically negligent acts of an employee under the theories of respondent superior or vicarious liability, the corporation could be directly liable for acts of the employee if the employee's acts were deemed the result of the corporation's policy or custom that was so likely to result in the violation of constitutional rights that the corporation could reasonably be said to have been deliberately indifferent to the prisoner's serious medical need in violation of the Eighth Amendment.

The court noted that a "policy" of the corporation is made when a decision-maker possessing final authority to establish a policy with respect to an allegedly violative action issues an official proclamation, policy or edict. According to the court, the "custom" of the corporation can be proven by showing that a given course of conduct, although not specifically endorsed or authorized by law, is so well-settled and permanent as to virtually constitute law. (Howard R. Young Correctional Institution, Wilmington, Delaware)

7. CIVIL RIGHTS: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, RA- Rehabilitation Act, Handicap, Pretrial Detainees

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Telephone

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, RA- Rehabilitation Act, Intake Screening, Telephone, Handicap

Bahl v. County of Ramsey, 597 F.Supp.2d 981 (D.Minn. 2009). Two hearing-impaired arrestees, and their respective girlfriend and husband, brought an action against a county, sheriffs department, and city, alleging that they were arrested by city police officers without being provided an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter and detained at an adult detention center (ADC) without access to an ASL interpreter or auxiliary aids that would have permitted them to communicate with others outside of the ADC. The plaintiffs asserted claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act, and the Minnesota Human Rights Act (MHRA), and for negligence. The district court dismissed the case in part. The court held that the girlfriend and husband had standing to sue the county, sheriffs department, and city under state and federal anti-discrimination laws, where they alleged that they experienced fear, anxiety, humiliation, and embarrassment because of the defendants' failure to permit the arrestees to contact them. The court found that the girlfriend and husband stated a claim for discrimination under the ADA by alleging that the arrestees requested auxiliary aids to communicate with people outside of the ADC, and that the county's failure to provide such aids precluded their communication with the arrestees. (Ramsey County Adult Detention Center, Minnesota)

16. FALSE IMPRISONMENT/ARREST: False Imprisonment

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Release

36. RELEASE: Release Date, Released on Bond, Timely Release

Blandford v. District of Columbia Jail, 593 F.Supp.2d 255 (D.D.C. 2009). An arrestee brought a civil rights action against a District of Columbia jail, alleging that he was detained for seven days without a lawful basis. The district court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment. The court held that the arrestee failed to demonstrate that he was detained beyond his purported release date, as required to state a [section] 1983 claim against the jail for unlawful detention. The court noted that the arrestee appended to his complaint a document that showed he was freed two days after his purported release date and voluntarily appeared in court on that date, and jail records showed that the arrestee was released on the same day that bond was posted on his behalf, and was not in jail at any time after the purported release date. (District of Columbia Jail)

13. EX-OFFENDERS: Claims

36. RELEASE: Due Process, Early Release, Equal Protection

43. SENTENCE: Equal Protection, Sentence

Bowdry v. Ochalla, 605 F.Supp.2d 1009 (N.D.Ill. 2009). A former state prison inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against attorneys employed by a county public defender's office, alleging that the attorneys' respective failure to notice and correct a mittimus error had resulted in the inmate's incarceration for an extra three months, asserting violations of due process, equal protection, and the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. The district court dismissed the action. The court held that the attorneys had not acted under the color of state law in failing to correct the mittimus error, where the review of mittimus fell within the scope of a lawyer's traditional functions, contrary to the defendant's contention that it was "essentially administrative." (Cook County Public Defenders, Illinois)

3. ADMINISTRATIVE SEGREGATION: Placement, Restraints, Hygiene, Conditions

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Segregation, Temperature, Clothing, Mattress, Restraints

23. HYGIENE-PRISONER PERSONAL: Clothing, Hygiene Items

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Segregation, Restraints, Security Practices

48. USE OF FORCE: Restraints

Bowers v. Pollard, 602 F.Supp.2d 977 (E.D.Wis. 2009). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against correctional facility officials, challenging the conditions of his confinement. The court held that the correctional facility's enforcement of a behavior action plan that regularly denied the inmate a sleeping mattress, occasionally required him to wear only a segregation smock or paper gown, and subjected him to frequent restraint did not deny the inmate the minimal civilized measure of life's necessities and was targeted at his misconduct, and thus the plan did not violate the inmate's Eighth Amendment rights. The court noted that the inmate's cell was heated to 73 degrees, he was generally provided some form of dress, he was granted access to hygiene items, and he was only denied a mattress and other possessions after he used them to perpetrate self-abusive behavior, covered his cell with excrement and blood, and injured facility staff.

The court held that the state Department of Corrections' regulations governing procedures for placing an inmate on observational status to ensure his safety and the safety of others, and the procedures for utilizing restraints for inmate safety were sufficient to protect the inmate's liberty interest in avoiding an erroneous determination that his behavior required such measures. The procedures governing observational status required the inmate to be orally informed of the reasons for placement on the status and prohibited placement for more than 15 days without an evidentiary hearing. The procedures governing restraints prohibited restraining an inmate for more than a 12-hour period. (Green Bay Correctional Institution, Wisconsin)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Retaliation for Legal Action

19. FREE SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND ASSOCIATION: Free Speech, Retaliation

Bridges v. Gilbert, 557 F.3d 541 (7th Cir. 2009). A prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against prison officials alleging that they retaliated against him for providing an affidavit in a deceased inmate's mother's wrongful death action, in violation of his First Amendment rights. The district court dismissed the complaint and the prisoner appealed. The appeals court affirmed in part and reversed in part. The court found that the prisoner stated a claim for First Amendment retaliation, but failed to state a claim for denial of access to the courts. According to the court, the prisoner stated a [section] 1983 claim for First Amendment retaliation by alleging that he engaged in protected speech by filing an affidavit in the wrongful death action, that he suffered retaliation through: delays in his incoming and outgoing mail; harassment by an officer kicking his cell door, turning his cell light off an on, and opening his cell trap and slamming it shut in order to startle him; unjustified disciplinary charges; and improper dismissal of his grievances. The prisoner alleged that he would not have been harassed if he had not participated in the wrongful death action. The court found that the prisoner's participation in filing the affidavit was not sufficiently connected to the deceased inmate's rights to allow the prisoner to assert a denial of access retaliation claim based on his assistance to the deceased inmate. (Wisconsin Secure Program Facility)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Contract Services, Harassment, Policies/Procedures

31. PERSONNEL: Harassment, Sexual Harassment, Supervision, Title VII

Brown v. Corr. Corp. of Am., 603 F.Supp.2d 73 (D.D.C. 2009). A former female correctional officer sued the District of Columbia, a private corrections contractor, and the director of the Department of Corrections (DOC) in his official capacity, asserting claims under Title VII and [section] 1983 alleging that her supervisor sexually harassed and raped her. The district court dismissed the case in part and denied dismissal in part. The court found that the Title VII claim and the [section] 1983 claim against the director were redundant of the claims against the District. The court held that the former female correctional officer's allegations were sufficient for a municipal liability claim under [section] 1983 against the District of Columbia, including allegations that the District adopted a custom of permitting sexual harassment to occur in correctional facilities by failing to take corrective action in response to her numerous sexual harassment complaints against the supervisor. The officer also alleged that the District allowed the supervisor to continue his incessant and relentless harassment and that ultimately the District's inaction led to her sexual assault by her harasser. The officer alleged that the District knew the sexual assault occurred at the correctional facility because sexual harassment was a standard operating procedure at the facility. The officer asserted that she suffered harm due to the District's willful blindness and failure to implement and effectuate appropriate policies to remedy and/or prevent sexual harassment and rape.

The court held that the issue of whether the District of Columbia and the private prison contractor were the correctional officer's joint employers, as required for the officer's Title VII claim against District, could not be resolved by a motion to dismiss. According to the court, there was a factual dispute as to whether the District possessed sufficient control over the contractor's employees to be considered a joint employer of officer. (District of Columbia, Corrections Corporation of America Correctional Treatment Facility)

2. ADMINISTRATION: APA- Administrative Procedures Act, Records

33. PRIVACY: Privacy Act, Records

Brown v. Federal Bureau of Prisons, 602 F.Supp.2d 173 (D.D.C. 2009). A federal prisoner filed an action under the Privacy Act alleging that the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) deliberately and willfully did not maintain accurate records and reports about gangs and gang members which caused him to be housed with inmates from whom he should have been kept separate, jeopardizing his safety and resulting in serious physical injury from attacks. The BOP filed a motion to dismiss, and the district court granted the motion. The court found that the Inmate Central Records System maintained by the BOP was exempt from the amendment requirements and civil remedies provisions of the Privacy Act; therefore, the federal prisoner could not sue the BOP for damages under the Privacy Act for information not maintained or incorrectly maintained in the BOP's Inmate Central Records System. According to the court, the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) was not available to the federal prisoner to address alleged inadequate and inaccurate record keeping by BOP, since BOP was not required to maintain accurate records. The court also noted that suit under APA was not available to the prisoner even under a liberal construction of his complaint as a challenge to the decision of the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) of where to house him, since the prisoner's place of imprisonment, and his transfers to other federal facilities, were specifically exempted from challenge under APA. (Federal Bureau of Prisons, District of Columbia)

33. PRIVACY: Searches

36. RELEASE: Due Process, Equal Protection

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Searches, Security Practices

41. SEARCHES: Strip Searches

Bullock v. Dart, 599 F.Supp.2d 947 (N.D.Ill. 2009). Inmates filed a [section] 1983 action challenging the constitutionality a county's policies of performing blanket strip searches on male, but not female, inmates returning to county jail from court hearings at which charges against them were dismissed, and of providing privacy screens for female discharges but not male discharges. After entry of summary judgment in the inmates' favor, the defendants moved for reconsideration. The district court granted the motion in part. The court held that male inmates were similarly situated to female potential discharges. The court found that fact issues remained as to whether the county's policies were justified, and whether security considerations prevented the county from segregating inmates against whom charges had been dismissed before they returned to their divisions. The defendants asserted that the much greater number of male inmates in county custody and the differences in the nature and frequency of dangerous incidents in each population justified the policy. The court held that the county's policy and practice of segregating female possible discharges from the remainder of female court returns, such that female actual returns could elect to avoid strip searches, but not segregating male possible discharges in a similar manner, was not gender-neutral on its face, for the purposes of the Equal Protection Clause. (Cook County Department of Corrections, Illinois)

18. FOOD: Religious Diet

24. IMMUNITY: Eleventh Amendment

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Special Diets

37. RELIGION: Diet, RLUIPA- Religious Land Use & Institutionalized Persons Act

Cardinal v. Metrish, 564 F.3d 794 (6th Cir. 2009). A prisoner brought an action against a warden seeking monetary damages, as well as declaratory and injunctive relief. The prisoner asserted violations of the Eighth Amendment and the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) based on the failure to provide him with kosher food which resulted in his not eating for eight days. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the warden. The prisoner appealed. The court held that the warden was entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity on the prisoner's claim seeking monetary damages for the alleged violation of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) for not providing him with kosher meals. According to the court, even though the state accepted federal funds for its prisons, RLUIPA did not contain a clear indication that receipt of federal prison funds was unambiguously conditioned on a state's consent to be sued for monetary damages. The court held that there was no evidence that the warden knew of and disregarded an excessive risk to the prisoner's health or safety, as required to support the prisoner's claim against the warden for deliberate indifference to his medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment based on failure to provide him with kosher food. (Hiawatha Correctional Facility, Michigan)

13. EX-OFFENDERS: Release, Sex Offenders

20. GOOD TIMES: Liberty Interest, Due Process, Good Time Credit

36. RELEASE: Due Process, Early Release, Good-Time, Sex Offenders

Carver v. Lehman, 558 F.3d 869 (9th Cir. 2009). A former inmate of the Washington Department of Corrections (DOC), who had been sentenced to a term of imprisonment plus a term of community custody based on his status as a sex offender, brought a [section] 1983 action against the secretary of the DOC. The former inmate alleged that denial of his application for early release into community custody constituted a violation of his due process rights. The district court granted summary judgment for the DOC secretary, and the former inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that state statutes did not create a liberty interest in early release into community custody for sex offenders who earned a good-time early release date. Rather, according to the court, the statutes only made such offenders eligible for discretionary transfer at an earlier date, if appropriate. (Washington State Department of Corrections)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Employee Discipline, FOIA- Freedom of Information Act, Records

Coleman v. Lappin, 607 F.Supp.2d 15 (D.D.C. 2009). An inmate filed a suit requesting information, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), from the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) regarding the investigations of a former prison employee who was terminated, as well as a disciplinary report that she filed against the inmate. The district court granted summary judgment for the BOP in part and denied in part. The court held that facsimile and extension numbers of BOP personnel, staff members' names, titles, Social Security numbers, dates of birth, pay grades, union affiliations, and dates of duty were exempt from disclosure. The court found that one page of information intended for BOP staff use only and records compiled for law enforcement purposes were not exempt from disclosure absent a description of the harms resulting from disclosure.

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Medical Care

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate indifference, Inadequate Care, Misdiagnosis

Conseillant v. Alves, 599 F.Supp.2d 367 (W.D.N.Y. 2009). A prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against a physician employed by the New York State Department of Correctional Services (DOCS) alleging improper or inadequate treatment, in violation of his rights under the Eighth Amendment. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the physician. The court held that the prisoner's allegations that a nurse practitioner misdiagnosed him as suffering from hepatitis, and that the defendant physician knew of this misdiagnosis but allowed the prisoner to think he had a deadly disease, were insufficient to demonstrate deliberate indifference. The court noted that the prisoner's medical treatment was not so inadequate as to amount to "cruel or unusual punishment" prohibited by the Eighth Amendment. According to the court, the prisoner did not establish that he had a "serious medical need," or that the physician ignored any serious medical need. The court noted that the physician was not personally involved in any misdiagnosis, as the evidence only showed that the physician ordered follow-up testing, not that he told the prisoner that he had an active hepatitis infection. (New York State Department of Correctional Services)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Jail House Lawyers, Legal Assistance, Legal Material, Searches

11. DISCIPLINE: Punishment, Rules, Work

33. PRIVACY: Right of Privacy, Searches

35. PROPERTY-PRISONER PERSONAL: Legal Material, Limitations, Prohibited Property

38. RULES AND REGULATIONS-PRISONER: Rules- Items Permitted

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Items Permitted, Searches- Cell, Telephone

41. SEARCHES: Cell Searches

42. SERVICES-PRISONER: Telephone

50. WORK-PRISONER: Compensation, Discipline, Due Process, FLSA- Fair Labor Standards Act, Liberty Interest, Property Interest, Removal From Job

Cox v. Ashcroft, 603 F.Supp.2d 1261 (E.D.Cal. 2009). A prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against the United States Attorney General, several federal prosecutors, and the owner and employees of a privately-owned federal facility in which the prisoner was incarcerated, alleging constitutional violations arising from his arrest, prosecution, and incarceration. The district court dismissed the action. The court held that the prisoner did not have any Fourth Amendment rights to privacy in his cell, and thus did not suffer any constitutional injury as a result of the search of his cell and the confiscation of another inmate's legal materials.

The court found that the prisoner did not have any liberty or property interest in employment while in prison, and thus the prisoner did not suffer any violation of his due process right related to his termination from his prison job as a result of discipline arising from the search of his cell, precluding liability on the part of facility owner and its employees under [section] 1983.

According to the court, the prison facility's imposition of a 30-day suspension of the prisoner's telephone privileges related to a disciplinary action arising from the search of his cell and the confiscation of another inmates' legal papers, did not constitute an unreasonable limitation on the prisoner's First Amendment rights. The court noted that prisoners have a First Amendment right to telephone access, subject to reasonable limitations.

The court found that regulations at a privately-owned federal prison facility prohibiting the prisoner from having the legal papers of another inmates in his cell did not chill the prisoner's exercise of his First Amendment right to provide legal assistance to fellow inmates, thus precluding liability on the part of the prison and its employees in the prisoner's [section] 1983 action alleging First Amendment retaliation. The court noted that the regulations reflected a legitimate penological objective in regulating when and where such assistance was provided.

The court found that the prisoner lacked standing to bring a claim against the warden of a privately-owned federal prison facility, alleging that paying the prisoner at a rate below minimum wage violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The court noted that prisoners were not "employees" within the meaning of FLSA. (Taft Correctional Institution, Wackenhut Corrections Corporation, California)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Discrimination, Employee Discipline, Unemployment

31. PERSONNEL: ADEA- Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Political Affiliation, Retaliation, Termination, Transfers

Cox v. DeSoto County, Miss., 564 F.3d 745 (5th Cir. 2009). A county employee brought an action against her county employer, alleging that as result of her age, in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), and in retaliation for her refusal to campaign actively for reelection of the county sheriff, in violation of the First Amendment, she was reassigned to the jail and later terminated. The district court granted summary judgment as to the termination claims, and entered judgment, upon jury verdict, in favor of the employer on the First Amendment claim, and in favor of employee on the age discrimination claim in connection with her reassignment. The employee appealed the grant of summary judgment. The appeals court affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded. The court held that the decision of the Mississippi Employment Security Commission (MESC), that the employee was not eligible for unemployment compensation benefits because she was discharged for work-related misconduct, did not collaterally prohibit the employee from claiming that she was terminated in retaliation for bringing an ADEA wrongful transfer claim, given the detailed administrative remedy provided by ADEA for such claims. (DeSoto County Sheriff, Mississippi)

29. MEDICAL CARE: Negligence

48. USE OF FORCE: Deadly Force, Excessive Force

Creed v. Virginia, 596 F.Supp.2d 930 (E.D.Va. 2009). The father of a prisoner who died while in custody brought an action in state court against the state of Virginia, a county sheriff, a prison supervisor, a prison director, and various prison employees. The father alleged that the prisoner died when he was placed in a choke hold and stopped breathing during a medical examination before his planned transfer to a hospital for involuntary commitment, asserting civil rights and supervisory liability claims under [section] 1983, as well as state law claims for negligence, gross negligence, and willful and wanton negligence. After the case was removed to federal court the prisoner's father and state moved to remand. The district court granted the motion. (Prince William-Manassas Regional Adult Detention Center, Virginia)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Legal Material, Retaliation

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Hygiene, Segregation, Use of Force

11. DISCIPLINE: Conditions of Segregation, Evidence, Retaliation

13. EX-OFFENDERS: Claims

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Officer on Prisoner Assault, Use of Force

23. HYGIENE-PRISONER PERSONAL: Toilet Paper, Hygiene Items

35. PROPERTY-PRISONER PERSONAL: Disposition of Property, Legal Material

48. USE OF FORCE: Excessive Force

Cusamano v. Sobek, 604 F.Supp.2d 416 (N.D.N.Y. 2009). A former state prisoner brought a pro se action against department of corrections employees, alleging violation of his First, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights as well as the New York Constitution. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants in part, and denied in part. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact regarding whether a corrections officer was present during, and participated in, the alleged assault of the prisoner. The court noted that an officer's failure to intervene during another officer's use of excessive force can itself constitute excessive force. The court also held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact regarding whether excessive force was used against the prisoner.

The court found that there was no meeting of the minds between corrections officers to inflict an unconstitutional injury on the prisoner, as required for the prisoner's conspiracy claim against the officers. According to the court, there was no evidence of an agreement to inflict an injury on the prisoner, or of an overt act done in furtherance of that goal.

The court found that there was no evidence that a misbehavior report that a corrections officer filed against the prisoner was a false report intended to cover up the use of excessive force, as required for the prisoner's false misbehavior report claim against the officer. The court also found no causal connection between the state prisoner's grievance and the issuance of the misbehavior report, as required for the state prisoner's retaliation claim against a corrections officer.

The court held that the denial of access to toilet paper and soap during the prisoner's confinement in a special housing unit did not constitute an unconstitutional condition of confinement, as required for the prisoner's inadequate prison conditions claim against corrections officers under the Eighth Amendment. The court noted that the deprivation of toilet paper and soap was not continuous, there was no evidence that the prisoner was deprived of any other toiletry items, and there was no evidence that the prisoner requested toilet paper during medical visits.

The court found that the actions of the corrections officers toward the prisoner, including the utterance of profanities and the deprivation of amenities, did not cause the prisoner physical injury or psychological injury that was more than de minimis, as required for the prisoner's harassment claim against the corrections officers under the Eighth Amendment.

The court found that a corrections officer's failure to include the prisoner's legal documents in the prisoner's personal items when the prisoner was transferred to a special housing unit was unintentional and did not cause the prisoner to be prejudiced during legal proceedings, as required for the prisoner's First Amendment denial of access to courts claim against the officer. (Gouverneur Correctional Facility, Clinton Correctional Facility, New York)

16. FALSE IMPRISONMENT/ARREST: False Arrest, Probable Cause, Unlawful Detention

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: False Arrest, Probable Cause, Unlawful Detention

36. RELEASE: Timely Release

Drogosch v. Metcalf, 557 F.3d 372 (6th Cir. 2009). An arrestee brought a [section] 1983 action against a parole agent and others, alleging false arrest and unlawful detention in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants on all claims but the one against the parole agent for unlawful detention. The district court denied the agent's motion for reconsideration and the agent appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the arrestee's 13-day confinement in jail without a probable cause hearing violated the Fourth Amendment. The court found that the parole agent was the person responsible for ensuring that the arrestee received a prompt probable cause hearing after his warrantless arrest for allegedly violating probation. The court held that the parole agent was not entitled to qualified immunity because he logged the arrestee into jail incorrectly as a parole violator, which ensured that the arrestee would not receive a prompt probable cause hearing. (Michigan Department of Corrections and Wayne County Jail, Michigan)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act, Retaliation

21. GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES, PRISONER: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act, Retaliation

Espinal v. Goord, 558 F.3d 119 (2nd Cir. 2009). A district court granted partial summary judgment in favor of the state defendants on the prisoner's civil rights claim for failure to exhaust administrative remedies under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), and the prisoner appealed. The appeals court affirmed in part, and reversed and remanded in part. The court held that state grievance procedures did not require an inmate to specifically name the responsible parties, and therefore the inmate did not fail to exhaust his administrative remedies under PLRA by omitting the names of the responsible parties from his prison grievance. The court found that the passage of only six months between the dismissal of the prisoner's lawsuit and an allegedly retaliatory beating by officers, one of whom was a defendant in the prior lawsuit, was sufficient to support an inference of a causal connection, and therefore a genuine issue of material fact existed as to the causal connection element of the prisoner's First Amendment retaliation claim. (New York State Department of Correctional Services, Green Haven Correctional Facility)

22. HABEAS CORPUS: Credit for Time Served, Sentence

43. SENTENCE: Consecutive Sentences

Espinoza v. Sabol, 558 F.3d 83 (1st Cir. 2009). A federal prisoner convicted for drug offenses petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus. The district court denied the petition and the prisoner appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the prisoner was not entitled to credit for the 14-month period that he was at liberty after federal authorities inadvertently released him prior to the expiration of his sentence, and that the prisoner's sentence for escape, imposed approximately 10 years after he was sentenced on federal drug charges, was subject to the statutory presumption that the sentence should run consecutively. The court noted that the erroneous release happened only because the prisoner had escaped from his halfway house, causing the need to process him again when he was apprehended, and there was no showing that the government acted arbitrarily or intentionally to prolong the prisoner's sentence. According to the court, giving the prisoner credit for the time he was free would amount to rewarding him for his escape. (Federal Bureau of Prisons, Massachusetts)

29. MEDICAL CARE: Adequacy of Care, Deliberate Indifference, Mental Health, Private Physician, Private Provider, Right to Refuse

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Deliberate Indifference, Medication, Psychiatric Care

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Mental Health, Medication

Estate of Rice ex rel. Rice v. Correctional Medical Services, 596 F.Supp.2d 1208 (N.D.Ind. 2009). The estate of a prisoner who died while detained at a county jail, where he suffered from schizophrenia and various complications as the result of his refusal to take his medication and his self-imposed starvation, brought an action against a private hospital and a physician at the hospital. The estate alleged that the physician deprived the prisoner of his constitutional rights in violation of [section] 1983, and that the hospital and physician negligently failed, under state law, to provide adequate medical care and treatment to the prisoner. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants in part.

The court held that an expert's summary judgment report, in which he stated, among other things, that the treating physician was fully aware that the deceased prisoner had been refusing food, drink, and medications, and that she had no reason to believe that the same pattern would not subsequently continue back in jail, was admissible. The court also found that the expert's summary judgment report that the physician who treated the schizophrenic prisoner prior to his death showed indifference to the prisoner's serious medical condition "by turning a blind eye to the likely outcome of a return to jail" was admissible. The court noted that the expert was not offering a legal conclusion as to the treating physician's subjective knowledge.

The court found that the prisoner had a serious medical need, as an element of his alleged Eighth Amendment violation. The court noted that the prisoner went to a hospital because he was not taking his medications, was not eating, had lost 50 pounds in 13 months, and was uncommunicative. Medical records indicated that the prisoner had severe mental problems, including schizophrenia, which posed a risk of serious damage to his future health. The physician who treated the prisoner acknowledged the seriousness of his condition in her medical recommendation, and ten weeks after his hospital stay, the prisoner died from malnutrition. (Elkhart County Jail, Indiana)

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Failure to Provide Care

Farnam v. Walker, 593 F.Supp.2d 1000 (C.D.Ill. 2009). A state prisoner who suffered from cystic fibrosis filed a civil rights action against a prison under the Eighth Amendment alleging deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs. The prisoner filed a motion for preliminary injunction which the district court granted. The court noted that the risk of irreparable harm had not abated and an inference existed that at least some prison personnel participated in, and acquiesced to, deliberate indifference to the prisoner's cystic fibrosis. According to the court, personnel with medical training and the ability to intervene subjectively knew of the prisoner's needs and yet disregarded them in such a way that a nominally competent professional would not have, and the prison denied the prisoner's appointment at a cystic fibrosis center via a "corporate utilization review" for no stated reason or explanation. (Graham Correctional Center, Illinois)

2. ADMINISTRATION: FOIA- Freedom of Information Act

49. VISITING: Visitor Searches

Federal CURE v. Lappin, 602 F.Supp.2d 197 (D.D.C. 2009). A nonprofit organization that advocated for the federal inmate population and their families and provided information to the public about the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) challenged the BOP's denial of a fee waiver for information requested under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), regarding the ion spectrometer method of scanning prison visitors. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the organization. The court held that the requested information was likely to contribute to increased public understanding of government activities, would reach a reasonably broad group of interested persons, and would contribute significantly to public understanding of government activities. The court noted that the organization would analyze and synthesize technical information to relay to prisoners and their families via a website, online newsletter, and Internet chat room that would disseminate information to a sufficiently broad audience. According to the court, the requested information was not yet in the public domain, so that any dissemination by the organization would enhance public understanding of the technology in centralized and easily accessible forums. (Federal Bureau of Prisons, Washington, D.C.)

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Use of Force

48. USE OF FORCE: Disturbance, Excessive Force

Fennell v. Gilstrap, 559 F.3d 1212 (11th Cir. 2009). A pretrial detainee brought a Fourteenth Amendment excessive force claim against a sheriffs deputy under [section] 1983. The district court entered summary judgment for the deputy and the detainee appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that once the district court decided that the detainee had shown excessive force, it could not then find that the deputy was qualifiedly immune because his use of excessive force was not in violation of clearly established law. But the court found that the deputy's kick to the detainee's face, which resulted in fractures, did not constitute excessive force. The court noted that the deputy saw the detainee struggling with six other officers who were unable to restrain him, the detainee had not yet been secured when the deputy kicked him, the deputy intended to kick the detainee in the arm rather than the face, the detainee had grabbed the arm of another officer, and the officers made an immediate offer of medical care. (Georgia)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Medical Care

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Medication

Fleming v. Sharma, 605 F.Supp.2d 399 (N.D.N.Y. 2009). The wife of a deceased prisoner, individually and as administratrix of the prisoner's estate, brought an action under [section] 1983 against a prison physician and a medical director, alleging that the defendants were deliberately indifferent to the prisoner's serious medical needs in violation of his Eighth Amendment rights, and seeking loss of consortium as a result of the prisoner's death. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants in part and denied in part. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the prison physician and medical director were deliberately indifferent to the serious medical needs of the prisoner, who suffered from congestive heart failure, and who died while under the defendants' care. The defendants allegedly failed to provide the prisoner with medication to stabilize his heart condition, despite the recommendations of four different physicians that the prisoner be treated with the medication.

According to the court, the prison physician and the medical director were not entitled to qualified immunity from the [section] 1983 claim brought by the wife where the very nature of the action called into question the reasonableness of the defendants' decision not to administer medication.

The court found that the loss of consortium claim brought by the wife was not cognizable pursuant to [section] 1983 where the claim was not based upon the deprivation of the wife's constitutional rights, but, rather, was a state law claim for the loss of her husband's love, support, and services. (Mohawk Correctional Facility, New York)

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Identification, Procedures, Searches, Showers

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Searches

Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders of County of Burlington, 595 F.Supp.2d 492 (D.N.J. 2009) Reversed and remanded 621 F.3d 296. A non-indictable arrestee brought a class action under [section] 1983 against counties, county jails, and jail wardens, among others, alleging that the defendants violated the non-indictable arrestees' constitutional rights by their policy of strip searching them without reasonable suspicion. The arrestee sought a preliminary injunction. The district court denied an injunction. The court held that county jail officers' "visual observation" of indictable and non-indictable offenders during intake procedures, which included complete disrobing, followed by examination of nude inmates for bruises, marks, wounds, or other distinguishing features, followed by supervised shower with a delousing agent, constituted a search under the Fourth Amendment. According to the district court, the blanket strip search policy, in the absence of a reasonable suspicion for drugs, weapons, or other contraband, violated the arrestees' Fourth Amendment rights. According to the court, the jails' justification for the policy--general security concerns and health concerns--did not trump Fourth Amendment protections. The court noted that the mere fact that there was ambiguity or inconsistency in a state regulation pertaining to strip searches did not change the fact that the law on the issue was clearly established in a jurisdiction pursuant to case law for nearly twenty-two years, for purposes of qualified immunity. On appeal the district court ruling was reversed and remanded. The appeals court found that the jails' policy of conducting strip searches of all arrestees upon their admission into the general prison population was reasonable and that the jails were not required to provide evidence of attempted smuggling or discovered contraband as justification for the policy. According to the appeals court, the decision to conduct strip searches, rather than use a body scanning chair, was reasonable. (Burleigh County Jail, Essex County Correctional Facility, New Jersey).

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Privileged Correspondence

28. MAIL: Correspondence- Court, Inspection of Mail, Legal Mail, Opening Mail

Fontroy v. Beard, 559 F.3d 173 (3rd Cir. 2009). Inmates sued state prison officials, claiming that a policy of opening legal and court mail outside their presence violated the First Amendment. The district court declared the policy unconstitutional in violation of the First Amendment. The prison officials appealed. The appeals court reversed, finding that the policy did not violate the First Amendment right of inmates to have mail opened in their presence. According to the court, the policy of requiring a control number on legal and court mail sent to inmates, opening mail without control numbers outside of inmates' presence, and inspecting for contraband before delivering mail to inmates, did not violate the First Amendment right of inmates to have mail opened in their presence. The court noted that the new legal mail policy was implemented to avoid abuse of the legal mail privilege, that the new policy was less burdensome on prison employees than the prior policy, that the inmates' proposed alternative could not be achieved at de minimis cost, and while inmates could not control whether courts or attorneys actually obtained control numbers, that alternatives were provided by new policy. (Pennsylvania Department of Corrections)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Working Conditions

31. PERSONNEL: Privacy, Searches, Termination

Garcia Rodriguez v. Laboy, 598 F.Supp.2d 186 (D.Puerto Rico 2008). Employees of a correctional facility brought a [section] 1983 action alleging Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment violations against canine unit officers of the Puerto Rico Correction Department, individually and in their official capacities. The employees challenged the officers' alleged public strip searches involving narcotics dogs and body cavity searches. The court granted two officers' motion to dismiss. The employees challenged searches that required them to make a line where narcotics dogs would sniff them. If the dogs alerted to the presence of narcotics, the employees would be subject to a strip search. However, the employees had to sign release forms before the strip search, and were forced to do so without time to read the forms and under the threat of losing their jobs. Then, the employees were required to undress and subject themselves to a body cavity search. The searches took place in areas to which the public, other employees, and inmates had access to, where they were able to witness the process. The court noted that when conducting these types of searches, officers of the Canine Unit violated several of the internal regulations of the Unit. The regulations required the officers to take every person searched before a supervisor, write a memorandum about each search, and ensure that the area of inspection was not contaminated prior to that particular search. Also, the search had to be limited to a physical search. The court noted that the officers of the Canine Unit searched over thirty employees, but never found any controlled substances. (Correction Department of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Correctional Complexes of Guayama 500 and Las Cucharas)

18. FOOD: Equal Protection, Religious Diet

37. RELIGION: Diet, Equal Protection, Free Exercise, RLUIPA- Religious Land Use & Institutionalized Persons Act

38. RULES AND REGULATIONS-PRISONER: Religious Articles, Rules- Items Permitted

Goodvine v. Swiekatowski, 594 F.Supp.2d 1049 (W.D.Wis. 2009). A state inmate brought an action against a state, its department of corrections, and various prison officials, alleging that interference with the practice of his Muslim faith violated [section] 1983, the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) and state law. A screening of the complaint for frivolous claims was required under the provisions of the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA). The court held that the inmate's allegations stated a claim against prison officials under RLUIPA. The court found that a rule that limited religious materials he could own to one soft cover text and that he was unable to practice his faith without his tariqah materials and additional religious texts did not violate the Free Exercise Clause. The court held that the denial of the inmate's request to purchase a Qur'an while in segregation, and the denial of the inmate's request for a halal diet did not violate the Free Exercise Clause. According to the court, refusal to provide sandwiches to the inmate to break fast did not violate RLUIPA, and prison officials' failure to "establish the Qiblah" for the inmate did not violate the Free Exercise Clause or RLUIPA. The court found that the inmate's allegations, that a prison chaplain discriminated against him by providing Christian inmates with free copies of the Bible and denied him an available free copy of the Qur'an, stated a claim against the chaplain under the Establishment Clause and Equal Protection Clause, The court held that the inmate's allegations that prison officials modified meal schedules for Christians wishing to fast for religious purposes but not for Muslims, stated a claim against prison officials under the Establishment Clause and the Equal Protection Clause. (Green Bay Correctional Institution, Wisconsin)

3. ADMINISTRATIVE SEGREGATION: Conditions

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Discipline, Exercise

11. DISCIPLINE: Disciplinary Procedures, Due Process

12. EXERCISE AND RECREATION: Segregation

23. HYGIENE-PRISONER PERSONAL: Showers, Hair

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Delay in Care, Due Process

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Haircut

Greene v. Furman, 610 F.Supp.2d 234 (W.D.N.Y. 2009). A state inmate brought a pro se [section] 1983 action against corrections officials, alleging various constitutional violations arising out of disciplinary proceedings instituted after he allegedly spit at another inmate. The district court dismissed the case. The court held that an allegation that a corrections officer issued a false misbehavior report against the inmate failed to state a claim for a due process violation. The court noted that the issuance of false misbehavior reports against an inmate by corrections officers is insufficient on its own to establish a denial of due process.

According to the court, the allegation that the inmate, who was being escorted to a mental health appointment when he became involved in an altercation with another inmate and was not allowed to continue to his appointment, failed to state a claim for an Eighth Amendment violation. The court found that any delay in the inmate's mental health treatment did not cause him actual harm or put his health at risk, and there was no evidence that the delay resulted from any sadistic or otherwise impermissible motive.

The court held that the allegation that the inmate was denied exercise, showers and haircuts after he became involved in an altercation with another inmate failed to state a claim for an Eighth Amendment violation based on his conditions of confinement, where the deprivations alleged were not atypical, did not result in any physical injury, and did not amount to cruel and unusual punishment. Southport Correctional Facility, New York)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act

8. CLASSIFICATION AND SEPARATION: Lower Bunk

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Beds, Medical Care

21. GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES, PRISONER: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act, Right to Access

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference

Griffin v. Arpaio, 557 F.3d 1117 (9th Cir. 2009). A state inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against a county sheriff and others, alleging cruel and unusual punishment and unsafe living conditions based on their failure to assign him a lower bunk for medical reasons. The defendants moved to dismiss for failure to exhaust administrative remedies under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA). The district court granted the motion and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. Although the court found that a prison grievance need only alert the prison to the nature of the wrong for which redress is sought and the inmate's failure to grieve deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs did not invalidate his exhaustion attempt, the inmate did not properly exhaust administrative remedies under PLRA. The court held that the inmate's grievance regarding his need for a lower bunk assignment did not provide sufficient notice of the staffs alleged disregard of his lower bunk assignments to allow officials to take appropriate responsive measures, as required to properly exhaust administrative remedies under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) before he brought a [section] 1983 action. The officials responding to the inmate's grievance reasonably concluded that a nurse's order for a lower bunk assignment solved the inmate's problem. (Maricopa County Sheriff, Arizona)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Failure to Protect, Prisoner on Prisoner Assault, Staffing

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity, Official Capacity

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Due Process, Failure to Protect, Staffing

45. SUPERVISION: Inadequate Supervision, Staffing Levels, Deliberate Indifference

46. TRAINING: Failure to Train

Hardy v. District of Columbia, 601 F.Supp.2d 182 (D.D.C. 2009). Pretrial detainees, allegedly assaulted by fellow inmates, brought a suit against the former Director of the District of Columbia Department of Corrections and a former jail warden in both their official and individual capacities, and against the District of Columbia. The detainees sought damages under [section] 1983 for alleged Fifth and Eighth Amendment violations. The district court dismissed the case in part. The court held that the detainees' [section] 1983 official capacity claims against the former Director and former jail warden were redundant to the claims against the District of Columbia, warranting dismissal. The court noted that claims brought against government employees in their official capacity are treated as claims against the employing government and serve no independent purpose when the government is also sued. The detainees alleged that before the scalding attacks that injured them, one of the very assailants had committed a similar scalding attack using water heated in an unguarded microwave, and that the locations where their assaults occurred were inadequately staffed with corrections officers and resulted in the assaults taking place without any officers in the vicinity. The court held that these allegations were sufficient to plead conditions of detention that posed a substantial risk of serious harm, as required to state a failure-to-protect claim against the Director of the District of Columbia Department of Corrections and the jail warden.

The detainees alleged that on the day of one of their scalding assaults by a fellow inmate, officials were present at a council hearing at which testimony described significant and multiple instances of violence in unguarded locations occurring in the jail, that the previous scalding assaults had occurred by the same inmate in question, and that despite such knowledge, the officials refused to take measures to protect inmates.

The court found that the detainees' allegation that the Director and jail warden were deliberately indifferent to negligent supervision of correctional officers and lack of staff training, was sufficient to state a [section] 1983 failure to train claim violative of their due process rights. The detainees alleged that the warden and Director were at the top of the "chain of command" at the jail, that they had been aware of violence issues for many years, and that they had been instructed to take action against violence on numerous occasions.

The district court denied qualified immunity for the Director and jail warden, noting that the detainees' due process rights against deliberate indifference were clearly established at the time of violent scalding attacks by fellow inmates. (District of Columbia Jail)

37. RELIGION: Equal Protection, Free Exercise, Recognized Religion, RFRA-Religious Freedom Restoration Act

Harrison v. Watts, 609 F.Supp.2d 561 (E.D.Va. 2009). A former federal inmate brought a Bivens action against various employees and administrators within the federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), asserting that his free exercise, equal protection, and rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA) were violated. The district court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss. The court denied the inmate's motion for reconsideration. The court held that the inmate's practice of the "Nation of Gods and Earths" was not a religion. According to the court, the inmate's practice of the "Nation of Gods and Earths" (NOGE) was a "way of life" and not a religion warranting free exercise protection, where the inmate had a long-standing and adamant position that the NOGE was not a religion and that its precepts were not religious in nature. (Federal Correctional Complex Petersburg, Virginia)

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Pregnancy, Medical Care, Children

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

29. MEDICAL CARE: Female Prisoners, Children, Delay in Care, Failure to Provide Care

Havard v. Puntuer, 600 F.Supp.2d 845 (E.D.Mich.,2009). The guardian of a minor child, who was born in a county jail while her mother was incarcerated there, brought a [section] 1983 action against jail employees for injuries sustained during and immediately after the birthing process. The district court denied the employees' motion to dismiss. The court held that the minor child was a "person" within the Fourteenth Amendment at the time of her [section] 1983 claims against jail employees, for injuries allegedly sustained as a result of alleged unconstitutional conduct during and immediately after the birthing process. The child was allegedly injured by the employees' failure to provide medical attention to the mother in violation of the child's due process rights, such that the child was not in a hospital at the time of her birth, the physicians and the facilities of the hospital were not available to resuscitate her when she was born, and she was not resuscitated until she arrived at the hospital following transport from the jail, at which time she had no respiration or heartbeat.

The court found that deputies and a nurse at the county jail were not entitled to qualified immunity from the [section] 1983 action brought on behalf of the minor child, where the constitutional duty to care for helpless infants who have newly come into the world, including the duty to care for them by anticipation, during the birthing process, was clearly established at the time of the birth. The court noted that the defendants allegedly left the mother in her cell for two hours even though they were aware that she was in active labor, crying out for help, and that, once called, paramedics did not arrive until the child was being delivered and did not have the equipment to resuscitate the child when she was delivered. (Wayne County Jail, Michigan)

8. CLASSIFICATION AND SEPARATION: Due Process, Equal Protection, Liberty Interest, Policy/Procedure, Transfer

47. TRANSFERS: Cruel and Unusual Punishment, Discipline, Due Process, Equal Protection, Transfer

50. WORK-PRISONER: Due Process, Equal Protection, Work Release

Holland v. Taylor, 604 F.Supp.2d 692 (D.Del. 2009). A state prisoner brought a pro se [section] 1983 action against a Department of Correction (DOC) and DOC officials, alleging violations of his constitutional rights to equal protection and due process, deliberate indifference, cruel and unusual punishment, and false imprisonment. The prisoner moved to appoint counsel, and the defendants brought a renewed motion for summary judgment. The district court granted the motion for summary judgment and denied the motion to appoint counsel. The court found that neither Delaware law nor Delaware Department of Correction regulations create a liberty interest, the denial of which would constitute a due process violation, in a prisoner's classification within an institution. The court found that the state prisoner had no constitutionally protected right to work release, and thus, neither the alleged failure of a multi-disciplinary team (MDT) member to inform the inmate of a disciplinary review meeting regarding his alleged work release program violation, nor the prisoner's transfer following completion of the sentence imposed in connection with the disciplinary meeting, to another facility to await return to the work-release facility, violated the prisoner's due process rights, absent any atypical or significant hardship by being housed at the other facility as compared to a work-release facility. (Delaware Correctional Center)

24. IMMUNITY: Eleventh Amendment, Sovereign Immunity

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Failure to Provide Care

36. RELEASE: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Medical Care, Parole-Granting

Hughes v. Colorado Dept. of Corrections, 594 F.Supp.2d 1226 (D.Colo. 2009). A state prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against the Colorado Department of Corrections (CDOC), the Colorado Parole Board, and the operator of a residential community corrections facility, alleging failure to adequately respond to the prisoner's mental health needs in violation of his constitutional rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The district court dismissed the complaint in part and denied dismissal in part. The court held that the prisoner's [section] 1983 claims against the Colorado Department of Corrections (CDOC) and the Colorado Parole Board were barred by the Eleventh Amendment, where Colorado had not waived Eleventh Amendment immunity, Congress had not abrogated state sovereign immunity for [section] 1983 claims, and both the CDOC and Board were state agencies. The court held that the prisoner's allegations of physical injury merely stemmed directly from his alleged mental illness and constituted only common manifestations of depression and anxiety, and thus were insufficient under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) to state a claim for money damages against the CDOC and the Board for alleged ADA violations.

According to the court, the prisoner's allegations were sufficient to plead a claim against the CDOC for discriminatorily denying the prisoner access to medical care in violation of Title II of the ADA. The prisoner alleged that the CDOC maintained a policy of assuring that inmates and parolees received required mental health treatment, that the CDOC intentionally failed to provide him mental health treatment while he was at the correctional facility, and that the CDOC denied his access to such treatment while on parole. The court noted that Title II of the ADA does not categorically bar a state parole board from making an individualized assessment of the future dangerousness of an inmate by taking into account the inmate's disability. (Sterling Correctional Facility, Independence House, Colorado)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Policies/Procedures

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Delay in Care, X-Ray

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Medical Care

Jenkins v. County of Hennepin, Minn., 557 F.3d 628 (8th Cir. 2009). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against a county, the supervisor of a jail's nursing staff, and others alleging he received constitutionally inadequate medical care while incarcerated. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court found that the supervisor of the jail's nursing staff did not act with deliberate indifference to the inmate's serious medical condition when she determined that the inmate should be sent for an x-ray in a day or two. The inmate was unable to open his jaw completely, blow his nose, or chew. According to the court, the decision reflected a medical judgment that the inmate's injury, though possibly serious was not urgent and nothing indicated that a one-day delay was detrimental to the inmate's recovery. The court held that the inmate failed to establish that any of the jail's official policies reflected deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs, as required to support his [section] 1983 claim. (Hennepin County Adult Detention Center, Minnesota)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Medical Care

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Medical Care

24. IMMUNITY: Sovereign Immunity

29. MEDICAL CARE: Delay of Care, Denial

Jennings v. Hart, 602 F.Supp.2d 754 (W.D.Va. 2009). The administrator of an inmate's estate brought an action against a sheriff and several other current or former officers in a county sheriffs department, alleging claims under [section] 1983 and a state wrongful death act for an officers' alleged wrongful denial of medical care to an inmate in the county jail. The district court denied the officers' motion to dismiss on the grounds of sovereign immunity. The district court held that the officers lacked the discretion to keep the inmate at the jail and deny her the opportunity to be seen by a neurologist or other medical professional for ten days following referral by a nurse practitioner. The officers allegedly ignored the inmate's repeated requests for help and worsening physical condition, including severe headaches, dizziness, pressure in her head, loss of appetite, and fluid drainage in her ears. By the time the officers contacted outside medical professionals, the inmate was suffering from brain abscesses and a stroke which lead to her death. (Culpeper County Jail, Virginia)

4. ASSESSMENT OF COSTS: Attorney Fees, Damages

5. ATTORNEY FEES: Attorney Fees, Determination, Limitation

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Officer on Prisoner Assault, Sexual Assault

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Sexual Assault

27. LIABILITY: Damages

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Failure to Provide Care, Sexual Assault

Kahle v. Leonard, 563 F.3d 736 (8th Cir. 2009). An individual who was raped by a trainee corrections officer while she was a pretrial detainee, brought a [section] 1983 action against the trainee corrections officer and other public officials and entities. After a jury found the trainee corrections officer liable and awarded damages, the district court granted the plaintiff's motion for attorneys' fees. The trainee corrections officer appealed. The appeals court affirmed in part and remanded in part. The court held that the district court did not abuse its discretion by admitting the plaintiff's psychologist's report as a supplemental report, and the district court's jury instructions did not constitute an abuse of discretion. The district court applied one percent of the detainee's $1.1 million judgment ($11,000) to attorneys' fees. With the detainee's legal expenses totaling $186,208.88, the defendant was responsible for $175,208.88 in attorneys' fees, in addition to the $1.1 million judgment. The appeals court did not affirm the award of only one percent and remanded the case for further proceedings. (Pennington County Jail, South Dakota)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Legal Material, Transfer

47. TRANSFERS: Access to Court, Due Process, Interstate Compact

Kim v. Veglas, 607 F.Supp.2d 286 (D.Mass. 2009). A prisoner, who was initially convicted and incarcerated in Maine, brought an action against various prison officials in Massachusetts and Maine alleging that his transfer to a Massachusetts corrections facility violated a variety of his constitutional and statutory rights. The district court dismissed the case in part. The court held that a Maine prison law librarian was subject to Massachusetts' long-arm statute, for the purposes of a claim of denial of access to the courts brought by the prisoner. The court noted that, in a letter to the prisoner in response to his request for legal materials, the librarian stated that he was the individual to contact for Maine legal materials, and that he required the prisoner to provide "exact citations" for requested legal materials. The prisoner contended that this requirement essentially prohibited him from acquiring Maine legal materials, and thus caused his constitutional injury. The court held that the prisoner's allegations were sufficient to satisfy the relatedness requirement for exercise of specific personal jurisdiction over the librarian, consistent with due process. According to the court, the librarian's alleged conduct was both the "but-for" and proximate cause of the prisoner's inability to access the courts, and the foreseeable result of the letter the librarian sent into Massachusetts was that it would prevent the prisoner from having meaningful access to legal materials. The court held that the exercise by the Massachusetts court of personal jurisdiction over the Maine prison law librarian would be reasonable, as required to comply with due process. The court found that Massachusetts had an interest in adjudicating the dispute because: (1) the Commonwealth would be less willing to accept inmates pursuant to the New England Interstate Corrections Compact if the prisoners it accepted must bring suit in Maine; (2) the prisoner had a great interest in accessing the federal courts in Massachusetts, given that he had adequate access to Massachusetts legal materials; (3) litigating in Massachusetts would promote judicial economy because the prisoner had already been appointed pro bono counsel and the case was pending in Massachusetts for several years; and (4) the suit would promote a substantive social policy of ensuring that interstate transfers of prisoners were not used as a means of cutting off inmates' ability to access the courts to seek redress for injuries suffered at the hands of donor states. (Maine State Prison, Massachusetts Correctional Institution-Cedar Junction)

22. HABEAS CORPUS: Alien, Jurisdiction, Transfer

47. TRANSFERS: Notification, Foreign Countries

Kiyemba v. Obama, 561 F.3d 509 (D.C. Cir. 2009). Nine detainees at the United States naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus. The detainees requested interim relief requiring the government to provide 30 days' notice to the court and counsel before transferring them from the naval base, asserting fears that they would be transferred to a country where they might be tortured or further detained. The district court entered requested orders and the government appealed. The appeals court vacated. The court held that the district court could exercise jurisdiction over claims related to the detainees' potential transfer. According to the court, a provision of the Military Commissions Act (MCA) eliminating jurisdiction over non-habeas actions against the United States or its agents relating to any aspect of a detainees' transfer did not apply to preclude jurisdiction over the detainees' claims for notice of transfer. But the court found that a writ of habeas corpus was not available to bar the detainee's transfer based upon the likelihood of a detainee being tortured in recipient country. The district court could not issue a writ of habeas corpus to bar the transfer of a detainee based upon the expectation that the recipient country would detain or prosecute the detainee. (United States Naval Base, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba)

20. GOOD TIMES: Good- Time Credit

22. HABEAS CORPUS: Good- Time Credit, Programs

34. PROGRAMS-PRISONER: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Participation

50. WORK-PRISONER: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Discipline, Segregation

Kogut v. Ashe, 602 F.Supp.2d 251 (D.Mass. 2009). A state prisoner filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus, alleging that he had been discriminatorily excluded from work programs in which he could have earned good-time credits, in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The district court dismissed the petition, Finding that the prisoner's alleged disabilities were not the reason for his exclusion from the work programs, as would violate the ADA. The prisoner was excluded from the work programs because he had been the subject of over 30 incident reports for harassment of staff, fights with other inmates, and other disciplinary infractions, and several of those incidents required the prisoner's segregation from general prison population. The court noted that disciplinary issues and concerns over prison security may be legitimate non-discriminatory grounds for limiting access to a jail program. (Worcester County Jail, Massachusetts)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Use of Force, Wrongful Death

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Restraints, Use of Force

46. TRAINING: Failure to Train

48. USE OF FORCE: Restraints

Lewis v. City of West Palm Beach, Fla., 561 F.3d 1288 (11th Cir. 2009). The survivor of a detainee who had died in police custody brought a [section] 1983 action against a city and against individual officers, alleging use of excessive force. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants and the survivor appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the detainee's right not to be restrained via "hobbling" and being "hogtied" was not clearly established. The detainee became unconscious and died during detention. According to the court, the officers' conduct was not so egregious as to be plainly unlawful to any reasonable officer, given the detainee's agitated state when first detained and given his continued uncooperative and agitated state, presenting a safety risk to himself and others, during restraint. After handcuffing the detainee did not prevent his continued violent behavior, the officers attached an ankle restraint to the handcuffs with a hobble cord (also known as "TARP," the total appendage restraint position). The hobble was tightened so that Lewis's hands and feet were close together behind his back in a "hogtied" position.

The court held that the city was not potentially liable for failure to train officers in the use of restraints, where the need for training in the application of "hobble" restraints did not rise to the level of obviousness that would render the city potentially liable under [section] 1983 for deliberate indifference based on the failure to administer such training. The court noted that hobble restraints did not have the same potential flagrant risk of constitutional violations as the use of deadly firearms. (West Palm Beach Police Department, Florida)

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Due Process, Privacy, Searches

33. PRIVACY: Searches, View by Inmates

41. SEARCHES: Body Cavity Search, Privacy, Strip Searches

Lopez v. Youngblood, 609 F.Supp.2d 1125 (E.D.Cal. 2009). Plaintiffs brought a class action against a county, sheriff, and former sheriff, seeking injunctive relief and damages for alleged violations of his federal and state constitutional rights resulting from strip and/or visual body cavity searches of detainees and inmates of the county jail. The district granted summary judgment in part and denied in part. The court held that the policy of the county sheriffs office of subjecting to strip search all pretrial detainees who are ordered released as a result of court appearances, upon their return from the courthouse and prior to their being returned to the county jail's general population for administrative reasons pending release, violated the detainees' Fourth Amendment rights. The court found that there was no evidence that pretrial detainees at the county jail were subjected to strip searches in small groups as a means of punishment, as required to establish that the strip searches violated the detainees' due process rights. According to the court, pre-arraignment arrestees were not similarly situated to post-arraignment detainees, such that the practice of providing privacy for pre-arraignment strip and/or visual body cavity searches, but not for such searches of post-arraignment detainees, did not violate equal protection, notwithstanding the contention that the interest in maintaining the privacy of one's body cavities was the same for both arrestees and detainees.

The court held that the defendants were entitled to qualified immunity because, at the time the county sheriffs office maintained the policy allowing for group strip and visual body cavity searches of post-arraignment detainees of the county jail, it was not clearly established that such searches violated the detainees' Fourth Amendment rights. (Kern County Sheriff's Department, Central Receiving Facility, Ridgecrest, Mojave, and Lerdo facilities, California)

11. DISCIPLINE: Due Process, Evidence

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Contraband, Mail, Telephone Calls

Loret v. Selsky, 595 F.Supp.2d 231 (W.D.N.Y. 2009). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against state correctional officials and employees, alleging procedural due process violations in connection with a prison disciplinary action. The district court granted summary judgment to the defendants in part and denied in part. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact as to whether there were legitimate security reasons for the correctional facility officials' denial of the inmate's request for a recording or transcript of the telephone conversation between him and his son. The conversation formed part of the basis for disciplinary charges against the inmate for conspiracy to smuggle contraband into the facility and for telephone abuse. A package addressed to the inmate had been opened by corrections employees, and was found to contain a quantity of marijuana and some small bottles of liquor. The package was later identified as having been sent to the plaintiff by his adult son. The court held that the superintendent of the correctional facility was not liable in his individual capacity to the inmate under [section] 1983 for any due process violations in connection with disciplinary proceedings against the inmate, absent a showing that the superintendent was personally involved in the alleged constitutional deprivation. (Wyoming Correctional Facility, New York)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Records

33. PRIVACY: Privacy Act, Records

Lynn v. Lappin, 593 F.Supp.2d 104 (D.D.C. 2009). A federal prisoner brought a pro se action against the Bureau of Prisons director and a prison warden, alleging that the defendants used false and inaccurate records to willfully and intentionally make adverse decisions concerning the prisoner. The district court dismissed the action. The court held that the Privacy Act provided the prisoner's exclusive remedy, and that the prisoner could not maintain a claim under the Act, where the Department of Justice (DOJ) had properly exempted the Bureau of Prisons' inmate central record system entirely from the Act's access and amendment requirements. (Administrative Maximum Facility, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Florence, Colorado)

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Discipline, Segregation

11. DISCIPLINE: Due Process, Equal Protection, Liberty Interest, Segregation

Marion v. Columbia Correction Inst., 559 F.3d 693 (7th Cir. 2009). A prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against prison officials alleging he was denied equal protection and due process at a disciplinary hearing which resulted in 240 days of disciplinary segregation. The district court dismissed the complaint and the prisoner appealed. The appeals court reversed and remanded. The court held that the issue of whether 240 days in disciplinary segregation was the type of atypical, significant hardship that would implicate a protected liberty interest could not be decided at the pleading stage. (Columbia Correctional Institution, Wisconsin)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Medical Care

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Intake Screening

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Medical Care, Intake Screening, Failure t Protect

Martinez v. Beggs, 563 F.3d 1082 (10th Cir. 2009). A pretrial detainee's estate brought a [section] 1983 action against a sheriff, deputies, and board of county commissioners alleging violations of the Fourteenth Amendment for deliberate indifference to the detainee's serious medical needs after the detainee died while in police custody. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants on qualified immunity grounds. The plaintiff appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the arresting officers and custodial officers had no reason to suspect that the detainee, who was intoxicated, posed a risk of heart attack and death, as required to support a claim that the officers violated the Fourteenth Amendment by being deliberately indifferent to the detainee's serious medical needs. (Cleveland County Detention Center, Oklahoma)

29. MEDICAL CARE: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Deliberate Indifference, Inadequate Care

34. PROGRAMS-PRISONER: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Handicapped, Participation

42. SERVICES-PRISONER: Library

Mason v. Correctional Medical Services, Inc., 559 F.3d 880 (8th Cir. 2009). A state prisoner brought an action against the manager of his prison housing unit and the director of prison medical services, alleging that they violated his Eighth Amendment rights by failing to facilitate or render adequate medical treatment. The prisoner also brought an action against the Missouri Department of Corrections (MDOC), alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the director and the MDOC. Following a jury verdict in favor of the manager, the district court denied the prisoner's post-trial motion for judgment as a matter of law. The prisoner appealed. The appeals court affirmed.

The court held that there was no admissible evidence that the director of prison medical services was informed of the prisoner's serious medical need arising from a blood clot in his left eye, and thus there was no basis for an Eighth Amendment claim against the director alleging deliberate indifference to this serious medical need. The court held that even if the defendant knew of the prisoner's serious medical need, he is not liable under the Eighth Amendment if he believed, albeit unsoundly, that the risk to which the facts gave rise was insubstantial or nonexistent.

The court found that recreational activities, medical services, and educational and vocational programs at state prisons are "benefits" within the meaning of the ADA, and qualified individuals with a disability are entitled to meaningful access to such benefits. The court held that the blind prisoner was provided with meaningful access to prison benefits, including library benefits, which required him to read and write, as required by the ADA. According to the court, given the sufficiency of the accommodations provided, the prison was not required to provide alternative accommodations such as Braille materials or computer software that would read written materials aloud. The prisoner was provided with an inmate reader, who was available to read to the prisoner in person and to create audio tapes of written material at the prisoner's request. The prisoner was also granted access to audio materials by mail and to a tape recorder.

The court held that the prison did not deny the blind prisoner meaningful access to prison facility benefits, in violation of the ADA, when it did not provide the prisoner with a trained outside assistant capable of assisting him in his day-to-day activities. The prisoner was provided with an inmate assistant, and the court found that it would be unduly burdensome to require the prison to furnish the prisoner with a trained handler from outside the prison, given that such a person would not be trained in safety and security matters, and would require the escort of a prison guard at all times.

The court found that the prison did not deprive the blind prisoner of meaningful access to the prison's exercise and recreation facilities, in violation of the ADA, where the prison provided the inmate an assistant who walked with the prisoner, and the prisoner chose not to engage in other activities, such as weightlifting.

According to the court, the prisoner was not denied meaningful access to his prison housing unit's ADA compliance officer, in violation of the ADA. The prisoner knew the identity of the ADA compliance officer, the officer had answered requests that the prisoner submitted and had not refused the prisoner's requests for assistance, and the prisoner was not entitled to a general disability assessment. (Northeast Correctional Center, Missouri)

18. FOOD: Medical Diet

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Inadequate Care, Medication, Special Diet, Treatment

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Deliberate Indifference, Medication

Mastroianni v. Reilly, 602 F.Supp.2d 425 (E.D.N.Y. 2009). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 action against a sheriff and medical personnel at a county correctional center, alleging a violation of his Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants in part, and denied in part.

The court held that the inmate's treatment by the jail's director of psychiatry and its mental health group did not pose any particular risk of harm or result in actual adverse consequences to the inmate, as would constitute deliberate indifference to serious medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment. The inmate was seen by someone in the mental health department, including the director, on a regular basis, and when he saw the director, he examined the inmate and discussed his problems. The inmate's medications were changed during the course of his treatment as a result of meeting with practitioners in the mental health department, and on one occasion the inmate complained to the director about his medication being discontinued and the director reacted appropriately and had it reinstated.

The court found that jail medical staff were not deliberately indifferent to the inmate's medical needs for the treatment of kidney stones in violation of the Eighth Amendment. Although the inmate disagreed with the course of treatment he received, he received regular medical attention for the condition and underwent the necessary diagnostic tests. At the onset of symptoms, the inmate filled out a sick call form and was brought to the the medical department where he was given a urine test and instructed to drink water. He returned to medical approximately every three days during this episode and was prescribed pain medication. He was then given a sonogram test and passed the stone naturally without surgical intervention.

The court held that jail medical staff were not deliberately indifferent to the inmate's medical needs for treatment of a back injury sustained as a result of a fall down the dormitory stairs. Immediately following the accident, the inmate was taken to a hospital and sometime thereafter he was given a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a result of continuing back pain. The inmate was diagnosed with herniated disks following the fall. After leaving jail, the treatment recommended by a specialist was stretching and exercise, which the inmate indicated was helpful to the condition.

According to the court, jail staff was not, in violation of the Eighth Amendment, deliberately indifferent to a known or obvious risk that the inmate would develop diabetes from an allegedly high starch diet, and staff was not deliberately indifferent to the inmate's medical needs when he developed diabetes while incarcerated. Prior to his incarceration, the inmate's physicians had advised him to observe a low-salt, low-fat diet. The inmate did not recall his physicians advising him that starches and sugars could increase his blood sugar. Upon discovery of the inmate's elevated blood sugar levels, he was placed on a diabetic diet, received daily blood glucose tests, and was prescribed diabetic medications.

The court held that summary judgment was precluded by genuine issues of material fact as to whether the jail's medical staff disregarded a serious risk of harm to the inmate in response to his repeated complaints of worsening heart symptoms, and as to whether the jail staffs alleged failure to provide the inmate with prescribed doses of medication for his high blood pressure, heart condition, and diabetes up to 150 times during a two-year period caused the deterioration of the inmate's health or posed an unreasonable future risk of harm. (Nassau County Correctional Center, New York)

27. LIABILITY: Damages

41. SEARCHES: Body Cavity Searches, Strip Searches

McCabe v. Mais, 602 F.Supp.2d 1025 (N.D.Iowa 2008). County jail detainees brought a [section] 1983 action against a county jail officer, alleging that the officer conducted illegal strip searches and visual body cavity searches. Following a jury trial, the district court granted the officer's motion reduce the jury's damages award, and after the detainees refused to accept the reduced damages award, ordered a new trial on the issue of damages. After a jury returned a verdict in favor of the detainees in the amount of $55,804, the detainees moved for new trial. The court held that a new trial on damages was not warranted and that the damages award was not so inadequate as to shock the conscience. The court noted that there was no evidence that the detainees were subjected to repeated violations of their Fourth Amendment rights, or that the illegal searches were conducted in a violent or mocking way, and detainees' own descriptions of their emotional distress was not compelling. (Linn County Jail, Iowa)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Employee Qualification, Volunteers

31. PERSONNEL: Equal Protection, Religion, Retaliation

37. RELIGION: Chaplain, Equal Protection, Opportunity to Practice, Place to Worship, Volunteers

McCollum v. California, 610 F.Supp.2d 1053 (N.D.Cal. 2009). A volunteer Wiccan chaplain for inmates incarcerated by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) filed suit alleging disparate treatment from volunteers of other faiths and retaliation for his complaints about the CDCR's treatment of Wiccans. The district court granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment. The court held that equal protection was not denied to the volunteer Wiccan chaplain who alleged he was not being permitted to see inmates at times and in locations when and where other chaplains were permitted, and that being denied access to chapel time for religious instruction and benefits extended to other administrative volunteer chaplains including access to telephone and computer, and being subjected to more rigorous security scrutiny. According to the court, there was no evidence that other voluntary clergy did not encounter the same difficulties or as to inmates that were denied access to his services.

The court found that the CDCR did not retaliate against the volunteer Wiccan chaplain for protected speech complaining against the mistreatment of Wiccans by "denigrating" him while addressing a group of Protestant chaplains or by refusing to hire him as community partnership manager at a women's facility and a state prison. The court noted that the claimed denigration, even if true, did not result in the loss of a valuable government benefit, and that the decision not to hire him was based on the superior qualifications of those ultimately hired rather than on his religion. (California Corrections Institution)

2. ADMINISTRATION: FOIA- Freedom of Information Act, Records, Telephone

19. FREE SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND ASSOCIATION: Conversation, FOIA- Freedom of Information Act, Telephone

Milton v. U.S. Dept. of Justice, 596 F.Supp.2d 63 (D.D.C. 2009). A prisoner filed a pro se complaint, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), seeking recordings of telephone conversations that he made from the prison to others. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the Department of Justice. The court held that the recordings were exempt from disclosure as personnel and medical files and similar files due to the invasion of privacy of third parties to conversations. The court also found that the recordings were exempt from disclosure as records compiled for law enforcement purposes, disclosure of which would invade the privacy of third parties to conversations. The court noted that the prisoner failed to tender signed waivers from the third parties to the conversations, and failed to offer a public interest rationale for overcoming the third parties' privacy interests. (U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, D.C.)

27. LIABILITY: Damages

29. MEDICAL CARE: ADA- Americans with Disabilities, Deliberate Indifference

Nails v. Laplante, 596 F.Supp.2d 475 (D.Conn. 2009). A state prisoner filed a civil rights action alleging that physicians had been deliberately indifferent to his medical needs and violated his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants. The court held that the prisoner's disagreement over the treatment provided by the defendant physicians was insufficient to show that the physicians actually were aware of a substantial risk that the prisoner would suffer serious harm as the result of their actions or inactions, as required for a claim of deliberate indifference under Eighth Amendment, or a claim under Title II of ADA. The court noted that a private suit for money damages under Title II of ADA could have been maintained against the physicians in their official capacities only if the prisoner, as plaintiff, could have established that the Title II violation had been motivated by either discriminatory animus or ill will due to the prisoner's disability. (Osborn Correctional Institution, Connecticut)

7. CIVIL RIGHTS: Aliens, Discrimination, Equal Protection, False Imprisonment

16. FALSE IMPRISONMENT/ARREST: Arrest and Detention, Identification, Probable Cause

27. LIABILITY: Alien, Injunctive Relief, Municipal Liability

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: False Arrest, False Imprisonment, Alien

Ortega Melendres v. Arpaio, 598 F.Supp.2d 1025 (D.Ariz. 2009). Detainees of Hispanic descent brought an action against a county sheriff for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that deputies from the sheriff's office profiled, targeted, and ultimately stopped and detained persons based on their race in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. The district court ruled against the defendants' motion to dismiss. The court held that: (1) allegations were sufficient to state Fourth Amendment claims; (2) allegations were sufficient to state equal protection claims; (3) the county was subject to municipal liability; and (4) the court would not dismiss the county sheriffs office as a non-jural entity. The plaintiff was detained for four hours in a police holding cell without being apprised of any charges against him, and was then handed over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.

The court held that an allegation that deputies placed the Hispanic passenger of speeding vehicle in full custodial arrest for violating United States immigration laws, even after the passenger provided them with sufficient immigration documents, including a United States Visa containing a fingerprint and picture, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) permit, and a Mexican Federal Voter Registration Card with a picture and fingerprint, was sufficient to state a claim for a Fourth Amendment violation for being placed into full custodial arrest without probable cause. The court noted that an allegation that the deputies' request for an Hispanic driver's Social Security card was not "standard procedure" for all routine traffic stops conducted by the county. According to the court, allegations that the county sheriff made a public statement that physical appearance alone was sufficient to question an individual about their immigration status, that the county's crime suppression sweeps had been allegedly targeted at areas having a high concentration of Hispanics, and that the county had used volunteers with known animosity towards Hispanics and immigrants to assist in crime sweeps, were sufficient to allege a discriminatory purpose, as required to state a [section] 1983 equal protection claim. (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, Cave Creek Holding Cell, Arizona)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Access to Court, Law Library, Legal Material, Photocopying

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Religion, Access to Court, Law Libraries

37. RELIGION: Free Exercise, RLUIPA- Religious Land Use & Institutionalized Persons Act

38. RULES AND REGULATIONS-PRISONER: Religious Articles

Ortiz v. Downey, 561 F.3d 664 (7th Cir. 2009). A federal pretrial detainee brought a [section] 1983 action against the chief of corrections at a detention center, alleging his rights under the First Amendment's Free Exercise Clause were violated. The district court dismissed the complaint and the detainee appealed. The appeals court reversed and remanded. The court held that the detainee stated a [section] 1983 claim that his First Amendment free exercise rights were violated by alleging that he was denied a religious rosary and a prayer booklet solely because a jail official did not find those items vital to worship. The court also found the alleged denial stated a claim under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA).

The court found that the detainee failed to allege that any deprivations in obtaining legal materials caused him an actual injury, as required to state a claim that his right of access to courts was denied. The court noted that a prisoner's complaint must spell out, in minimal detail, the connection between the alleged denial of access to legal materials and an inability to pursue a legitimate challenge to a conviction, sentence, or prison conditions to state a claim that his right to access the courts was denied. The detainee had asked jail officials to copy, at no charge, approximately fifty legal documents that pertained either to his pro se civil suit against his jailers or to his criminal prosecution. The detainee was represented by counsel in the criminal case, but was proceeding pro se in the civil matter. Jail officials told the detainee that he would be charged $1.00 per page, but also noted that copies regarding his criminal case would be provided at no charge. The detainee sought access to a law library and tried to subscribe to various legal periodicals, but his requests were denied. (Jerome Combs Detention Center, Kankakee, Illinois)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Appointed Attorney, In Forma Pauperis, Teleconference

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Use of Force

Palmer v. Valdez, 560 F.3d 965 (9th Cir. 2009). A state prison inmate brought a pro se [section] 1983 action against corrections officials, alleging use of excessive force in violation of the Eighth Amendment's prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment. Following a bench trial, the district entered judgment for the officials, and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the district court did not abuse its discretion by declining to appoint counsel for the inmate under the in forma pauperis statute. The prisoner claimed that the district court improperly conditioned his use of telephonic testimony on his waiver of a jury trial, but the appeals court found that a bench trial that featured telephonic testimony was the prisoner's strategic choice. (California)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Budget

15. FACILITIES: Medical Areas, Medical Exam

27. LIABILITY: Contempt

29. MEDICAL CARE: ADA- Americans with Disabilities Act, Inadequate Care

Plata v. Schwarzenegger, 560 F.3d 976 (9th Cir. 2009). In a class action brought on behalf of state prisoners, alleging that state officials were providing inadequate health care in violation of the Eighth Amendment and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the receiver appointed to oversee the provision of health care at state prisons moved for an order of contempt based on the state's failure to fund the receiver's capital projects. The district court ordered the state to fund the projects and to show cause why it should not be held in contempt. The state appealed, and alternatively filed a petition for a writ of mandamus. The appeals court dismissed the appeal and denied the writ of mandamus. According to the court, the state failed to prove that it would be damaged or prejudiced in a way not correctable on appeal, weighing against granting the state's petition for a writ of mandamus to prevent the district court from holding it in contempt based on its failure to fund the receiver's capital projects. (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation)

24. IMMUNITY: Qualified Immunity, Sovereign Immunity

31. PERSONNEL: Association, Due Process, Termination

Poirier v. Massachusetts Dept. of Correction, 558 F.3d 92 (1st Cir. 2009). A discharged prison guard sued the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (DOC) and its commissioner under [section] 1983, claiming that a regulation prohibiting her from associating with present or former inmates violated her First Amendment associational rights and her Fourteenth Amendment due process rights. The district court dismissed the case and the prison guard appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the First Amendment associational and Fourteenth Amendment due process rights of the prison guard were not violated when she was discharged for violating a DOC regulation prohibiting non-approved association with a former inmate. The court found that the DOC's legitimate interest in preserving prison security was reasonably advanced by prohibiting a guard-former prisoner relationship, and that the DOC's interest outweighed the degree of intrusion into the guard's private life imposed by the regulation. The court held that the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (DOC) was entitled to sovereign immunity, and that the Commissioner of the DOC had qualified immunity from liability in the [section] 1983 claim because it was not clearly established that enforcement of the regulation would be an unlawful act. (Massachusetts Department of Corrections)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Suicide

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Failure to Provide Care, Suicide

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Failure to Protect, Suicide

Powers-Bunce v. District of Columbia, 594 F.Supp.2d 54 (D.D.C. 2009). The mother of a detainee who hung himself in a holding cell at a police precinct headquarters brought an action against the District of Columbia and individual police and Secret Service officers alleging constitutional violations and tort claims for her son's suicide. The detainee hung himself shortly after he was arrested by the Secret Service for cocaine possession and driving with a suspended license. The detainee had been placed in a jail cell away from other detainees around 2:00 a.m. No one checked on the detainee while he was alone in his cell between 2:30 a.m. and 4:16 a.m. He was found hanging from the bars of the jail cell by his tube socks tied in a knot around 4:16 a.m. The district court dismissed claims against the police officers and the Secret Service officers in their entirety. The court held that the arresting Secret Service officers were not the custodians of the detainee and therefore had no "special relationship" with the detainee giving rise to an affirmative duty to resuscitate the detainee, as would support the due process claims of the detainee's mother against the officers for deliberate indifference in their failure to resuscitate. According to the court, although the officers had taken temporary custody of the detainee and might have obtained a key to the cell, the District, not the officers, was the custodian which owed an affirmative duty of protection to the detainee. (Metropolitan Police Department's Third District Precinct Headquarters, District Columbia)

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Privacy, Searches

41. SEARCHES: Privacy, Strip Searches

Quinones-Ruiz v. Pereira-Castillo, 607 F.Supp.2d 296 (D.Puerto Rico 2009). A state inmate brought a pro se [section] 1983 action for injunctive and monetary relief against state prison officials, alleging that the requirement that he squat over a mirror set on the floor in order to have his anus examined when moved to different areas of the facility was conducted in a hostile and denigrating manner, and that it humiliated and frustrated him. The district court dismissed the action. The court found that the inmate's complaint failed to provide any details which could lead the court to conclude that the prison's requirement was unreasonable, or that the inmate was an inmate being held for a minor offense or one that did not involve drugs, weapons, or other forms of contraband, as required to state a [section] 1983 claim for a violation of the inmate's right against unreasonable searches and seizures or cruel and unusual punishment. (Las Cucharas Correctional Facility, Puerto Rico)

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Privacy, Suicide

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Searches, Clothing, Suicide

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Searches

41. SEARCHES: Strip Searches, Pretrial Detainees

Reinhart v. City of Schenectady Police Dept., 599 F.Supp.2d 323 (N.D.N.Y. 2009). An arrestee brought a [section] 1983 action against a city, police department and officers, alleging Fourth Amendment violations following her arrest for allegedly making harassing telephone calls. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants. The court held that probable cause existed to commence the criminal action and perform the arrest, and that the suspicionless seizure of the arrestee's brassiere while incarcerated qualified as a "special need" for Fourth Amendment purposes. The court noted that the police department had a policy of seizing brassieres purely as a safety measure to preclude their use as a suicide tool, and the policy was implemented in a manner reasonably designed to reduce intrusion on the arrestee's privacy by allowing her to remove the brassiere without disrobing. (Schenectady Police Department, New York)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Conditions, Policies/Procedures

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Supervision, Wrongful Death, Prisoner on Prisoner Assault

15. FACILITIES: Cells, Lights, Security

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Cells, Failure to Protect, Supervision

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Locks

45. SUPERVISION: Inadequate Supervision

Rodriguez-Borton v. Pereira-Castillo, 593 F.Supp.2d 399 (D.Puerto Rico 2009). Relatives of a deceased pretrial detainee brought a [section] 1983 action against prison officials, requesting damages for constitutional violations culminating in the detainee's death. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants in part and denied in part. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by fact issues as to the lack of adequate inmate supervision and malfunctioning cell locks and cell lights. The court also found an issue of material fact as to whether the Administrator of the Puerto Rico Administration of Corrections (AOC) failed to act with regard to security risks, including malfunctioning door locks, in the annex within which the pretrial detainee was found hanged, The court also found a genuine issue of material fact as to the prison annex superintendent's failure to remedy supervision problems in housing units where he knew inmates were able to and did move freely in and out of their cells due to malfunctioning door locks. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by a genuine issue of material fact as to a correctional officer's failure to patrol the living area of the annex within which the pretrial detainee was found hanged while he knew inmates were able to freely move around. The court denied qualified immunity to the defendants because it was clearly established at the time of the alleged inaction, and a reasonable prison official working in the system would have known that a lack of supervision, combined with the knowledge that cell locks did not function, would create an obvious and undeniable security risk. (Administration of Corrections of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and Annex 246)

19. FREE SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND ASSOCIATION: Communication, Mail, Visitors

28. MAIL: Limitation

38. RULES AND REGULATIONS-PRISONER: Mail, Restrictions, Visits

49. VISITING: Restrictions

Samford v. Dretke, 562 F.3d 674 (5th) Cir. 2009). A state prison inmate brought an in forma pauperis [section] 1983 action against a corrections official, alleging that a prohibition against any communication between the inmate and his sons constituted a violation of his First Amendment rights to freedom of speech and association. The district court dismissed the petition and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the enforcement of a "negative mail list" that included the inmate's sons did not unduly infringe upon the inmate's First Amendment rights, and the officials' removal of the inmate's sons from the approved visitors list was reasonable. The court found that the restriction was rationally related to the prison's legitimate interest in protecting crime victims and their families from unwanted communications, given the inmate's wife's request that the sons be placed on the list and the fact that the inmate had been imprisoned after violating a probation condition of no contact with the sons. The court noted that an alternate means of communication remained open via the inmate's mother. (Texas Department of Criminal Justice)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Contract Services

29. MEDICAL CARE: Contract Services, Delay in Treatment, Medication

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Medication

Sauve v. Lamberti, 597 F.Supp.2d 1312 (S.D.Fla. 2008). A former prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against a sheriff and correctional health services corporation, alleging that the defendants denied the prisoner access to medications while he was incarcerated. The district court denied the defendants' motion for summary judgment. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by genuine issues of material fact as to the extent that a doctor employed by the corporation with which the county contracted for correctional health care services was aware of the prisoner's history of drug problems, mental health issues, and prior noncompliance with treatment at the time of his decision not to place the prisoner on medication. The court also found genuine issues of material fact as to whether the decision not to place the prisoner on medication for the first 49 days of his incarceration was based on the medical judgment of the doctor. The court held that summary judgment was also precluded by genuine issues of material fact as to whether the corporation had a practice or policy that resulted in the prisoner being denied medication for 49 days during his incarceration.

The court ruled that the sheriff failed to establish an entitlement to summary judgment, even though the former prisoner presented evidence only as to the private corporation with which the county contracted for correctional health care services because the county remained liable for constitutional deprivations caused by policies or customs of the corporation. (Broward County Jail, Florida, and Armor Correctional Health Services)

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Privacy, Searches

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Identification

26. JUVENILES: Due Process, Privacy, Search

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Due Process, Juveniles, Privacy, Searches

33. PRIVACY: Right to Privacy, Searches, Staff of Opposite Sex

41. SEARCHES: Privacy, Strip Searches

Schmidt v. City of Bella Villa, 557 F.3d 564 (8th Cir. 2009). An arrestee brought a [section] 1983 action against a police chief and city, alleging the chief's photographing of her tattoo violated her rights. The defendants moved for summary judgment and the district court granted the motion. The arrestee appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the chief's photographing of the arrestee's tattoo was not an unreasonable search and did not violate due process, and the photographing of the arrestee's tattoo did not amount to a strip search under Missouri strip search law. The court found that the action of photographing the tattoo did not violate the Fourth Amendment, despite the fact that the arrestee was required to unzip her pants for the photograph and that the photograph was taken by male officer. The court concluded that the photograph served legitimate law enforcement purposes, the chief told the arrestee that photograph was needed for identification purposes, and the photograph was taken in private. The court noted that the arrestee gave a false date of birth and social security number. She was arrested for making a false declaration and for being a minor in possession of alcohol. (City of Bella Villa, Missouri)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act

21. GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES, PRISONER: Exhaustion, PLRA- Prison Litigation Reform Act, Procedures

Shaw v. Jahnke, 607 F.Supp.2d 1005 (W.D.Wis. 2009). A state prisoner brought a civil rights action against a corrections officer alleging excessive force. The district court denied the officer's motion for summary judgment. The court held that the prisoner had exhausted his administrative remedies. According to the court, the prisoner made sufficient efforts to exhaust his administrative remedies as required by the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), and that it was the corrections department's misinformation rather than any negligence or manipulation on the prisoner's part that prevented him from completing the grievance process. (Columbia Correctional Institution, Wisconsin)

29. MEDICAL CARE: Contract Services, Inadequate Care, Prostheses

Silva v. Clarke, 603 F.Supp.2d 248 (D.Mass. 2009). An inmate brought a civil rights suit against the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Correction (DOC), a subcontracted medical provider and an employee of the provider, claiming that his Eighth Amendment rights were being violated due to inadequate medical care. The inmate moved for a preliminary injunction and a defendant moved to dismiss. The district court dismissed the action, finding that the inmate's assertion that he was not being provided with medically-required footwear failed to state a claim. The court noted that the inmate did not allege a complete denial of medical treatment, but rather that prison officials refused to follow the recommendation of one of the physicians who examined him, and he was examined by several doctors and given custom made orthotics. (Souza-Baranowski Correctional Facility, Massachusetts)

47. TRANSFERS: Foreign Countries

Simmons v. Wolff, 594 F.Supp.2d 6 (D.D.C. 2009). A prison inmate filed a pro se [section] 1983 action, alleging that the denial of his requests to serve his sentence in Canada constituted cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment. The district court dismissed the complaint. The court held that it lacked jurisdiction to entertain claims against federal government officials, in their official capacities, where the government was sued for damages for constitutional torts. The court found that the prison inmate was not subjected to such "extreme deprivations" as to support a claim for cruel and unusual punishment, based on not being allowed to serve his sentence in Canada, which made it difficult for his family to visit him, and not being allowed, as a foreigner, to participate in certain rehabilitation programs. (Federal Bureau of Prisons)

31. PERSONNEL: FMLA- Family Medical Leave Act, Retaliation, Termination

Simpson v. Office of Chief Judge of Circuit Court of Will County, 559 F.3d 706 (7th Cir. 2009). A former employee sued an employer alleging that the employer denied her request for a leave of absence and later terminated her employment in violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The district court granted the employer's motion for summary judgment. The employee appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the employee's poor work performance constituted a legitimate, non-pretextual reason for her termination. The court found that there was no evidence that the employee was similarly situated to an employee who was treated more favorably and who did not take FMLA leave, for the purposes of her retaliation claim. (Will County, Illinois)

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference

Sledge v. Kooi, 564 F.3d 105 (2nd Cir. 2009). A state inmate brought a [section] 1983 action alleging violation of his Eighth Amendment rights, against a physician at a state correctional facility. The inmate alleged deliberate indifference in refusing to provide him with proper medical treatment for his alleged eczema, back pain, stomach disorders, allergies, and asthma. The district court granted summary judgment for the physician and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the inmate's alleged medical conditions did not constitute a serious medical need. (Auburn Correctional Facility, New York)

36. RELEASE: Ex Post Facto, Parole-Guidelines, Sentence to Parole

43. SENTENCE: Ex Post Facto, Guidelines, Sentence to Parole

Smith v. Reilly, 604 F.Supp.2d 124 (D.D.C. 2009). An inmate brought a [section] 1983 suit against members of the United States Parole Commission (USPC), asserting an ex post facto challenge to the application of the USPC's parole guidelines. The district court granted the summary judgment for the defendants. The court held that the Ex Post Facto Clause barred application of the new parole guidelines, which increased the risk that the inmate would serve a longer period of incarceration. According to the court, the new USPC guidelines, but not the old ones, prevented a candidate who, like the inmate, had committed a crime of violence resulting in death, from even being found suitable for parole when he first became eligible after serving a minimum sentence. The new guidelines also translated disciplinary infractions directly into additional months of incarceration, and considered all disciplinary infractions were considered. (District of Columbia Board of Parole)

15. FACILITIES: Asbestos

27. LIABILITY: Bivens Claim, FTCA- Federal Tort Claims Act

50. WORK-PRISONER: Work Conditions

Smith v. U.S., 561 F.3d 1090 (10th Cir. 2009). An inmate brought an action against prison employees, the U.S. Attorney General, and the director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, alleging that he was exposed to asbestos while assigned to work at a prison. The district court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss, and the inmate appealed. The appeals court affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded. The court held that the Inmate Accident Compensation Act was the exclusive remedy against the government for a prisoner with alleged work-related injuries, and thus dismissal of the prisoner's claims under Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) was warranted. The court held that the federal workers' compensation scheme for participants in a prison work program lacked the requisite procedural safeguards of the inmate's constitutional rights to foreclose a Bivens action by the inmate. According to the court, the inmate's allegations that prison employees had known that asbestos was present in a closet in which the inmate was working when he was exposed to asbestos were sufficient to state an Eighth Amendment Bivens claim against those employees. (United States Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas)

8. CLASSIFICATION AND SEPARATION: Religion, Segregation

24. IMMUNITY: Sovereign Immunity

37. RELIGION: Place to Worship, RLUIPA- Religious Land Use & Institutionalized Persons Act

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Religious Services, Security Practices

Sossamon v. Lone Star State of Texas, 560 F.3d 316 (5th Cir. 2009). A prison inmate brought a civil rights action challenging prison officials' refusal to allow him to participate in religious services while he was on cell restriction, and refusal to make a chapel available for religious services due to security concerns allegedly presented by holding such services in the chapel. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants and the inmate appealed. The appeals court dismissed as moot in part, reversed in part, affirmed in part and remanded. The court held that the state-wide cessation, in all correctional facilities in Texas, of the policy of preventing general-population prisoners on cell restriction from attending religious services had the effect of mooting the civil rights claim. The court found that the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) did not create an individual-capacity cause of action in favor of the prison inmate against prison officials who had denied him access to a prison chapel. According to the court, RLUIPA did not provide clear notice that, by accepting federal funds, the state was waiving its sovereign immunity from liability for such monetary damages. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by genuine issues of material fact on the inmate's claims for injunctive relief challenging the denial of access to a chapel. The inmate alleged that his exercise of religion was substantially burdened because he could not use the prison chapel where he could kneel in front of an alter in view of a cross, and due to his being able to attend religious services only at other locations in the prison that were not specifically designed for Christian worship. (Robertson Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Correctional Institutions Division)

7. CIVIL RIGHTS: Civil Commitment, Privacy, Visits

19. FREE SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND ASSOCIATION: Conversation, Eavesdropping, Privacy, Visits

33. PRIVACY: Observation by Staff, Visitors

49. VISITING: Rules

Sparks v. Seltzer, 607 F.Supp.2d 437 (E.D.N.Y. 2009). A psychiatric patient, on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated, brought a [section] 1983 action against a director and a treatment team leader at a psychiatric center in a New York state psychiatric hospital. The patient was housed in an inpatient, long-term locked ward which normally houses a mixture of voluntary patients, patients who have been involuntarily committed under the civil law, and patients committed as a result of a verdict of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect or a finding of incompetence to stand trial. The patient alleged violations of his First Amendment rights and his "zone of privacy" concerning a supervised visitation policy. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants. The court held that the psychiatric patients' speech during supervised visits at a state psychiatric hospital was not wholly unprotected by the First Amendment, although the speech was casual and among family members or friends. According to the court, the reluctance of psychiatric patients in the state psychiatric hospital to discuss various matters within the earshot of a supervising guard during supervised visitation did not give rise to a cognizable injury to their free speech rights. The court noted that no patient had lost privileges, had the term of involuntary hospitalization extended, or had otherwise been punished or threatened with being punished for anything he or a visitor had said in a supervised visit. Patients were not required to speak loudly enough to be heard, guards did not generally report the contents of conversations to hospital authorities, and no sound recordings of the visits were made. The court held that the state psychiatric hospital's supervised visitation policy imposed upon patients did not invade their "zone of privacy" in violation of the Fourth Amendment, since patients had no reasonable expectation of privacy in a hospital visiting room which could be entered by anyone during a visit and which was used by more than one patient at a time for visits. The court found that the supervised visitation policy did not, on its face or applied to patients, infringe upon their privacy rights under the Fourteenth Amendment. (Creedmoor Psychiatric Center, New York)

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Searches

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Searches

27. LIABILITY: Damages

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Searches

41. SEARCHES: Strip Searches, Females

Tardiff v. Knox County, 598 F.Supp.2d 115 (D.Me. 2009). After granting a detainee's motion for summary judgment on liability under [section] 1983 for a strip search she underwent at a county jail, the county moved to exclude the detainee's evidence of lost income or profits allegedly caused by her mental distress growing out of the strip search. The district court granted the motion in part and denied in part. The court held that the detainee's tardy pretrial disclosure of economic loss information did not prejudice the county's ability to investigate so as to warrant the exclusion of evidence of the detainee's evidence of lost income or profits. The court found that damages for economic loss based upon a lost future contract were not recoverable in the civil rights suit seeking damages allegedly caused by the detainee's mental distress, since the jury would have to speculate in order to determine whether the detainee suffered an economic loss on a future contract and, if so, how much. (Knox County Jail, Maine)

13. EX-OFFENDERS: Claims

48. USE OF FORCE: Excessive Force

Teas v. Ferguson, 608 F.Supp.2d 1070 (W.D.Ark. 2009). A former inmate brought a pro se civil rights action pursuant to [section] 1983 against detention center staff alleging that while he was an inmate of the detention center, his constitutional rights against excessive force and retaliation were violated. The district court denied the defendant's motion for summary judgment. The court held that summary judgment was precluded by genuine issues of material fact as to whether excessive force was used against the prisoner, while still a pretrial detainee. (Benton County Detention Center, Arkansas)

22. HABEAS CORPUS: Parole

36. RELEASE: Parole-Guidelines, Parole-Policies, Video Communication

Terrell v. U.S., 564 F.3d 442 (6th Cir. 2009). A federal prisoner serving a life sentence for murder filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus asking the court to order in-person parole determination hearings. The district court granted the petition, and the government appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the United States Parole Commission's use of videoconferencing to conduct parole determination proceedings violated the Parole Commission Reorganization Act's requirement that a prisoner shall be allowed to "appear and testify" on his own behalf at the parole determination hearing. According to the court, the meaning of the term "appear" at the time the Parole Commission Reorganization Act was enacted was unambiguous and required an in-person hearing, given that other methods, such as videoconferencing, did not exist at the time of the enactment. The court noted that relief for a prisoner under the federal habeas statute and under [section] 1983 are not necessarily mutually exclusive remedies in the parole context, and that the claim brought by the prisoner pursuant to habeas statute was cognizable under habeas statute as a challenge to the execution of his sentence. (Branch Prison, Marquette, Michigan)

1. ACCESS TO COURTS: Appointed Attorney, In Forma Pauperis, Pro Se Litigation

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Suicide Attempt

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Inadequate Care

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Suicide, Failure to Provide Care

34. PROGRAMS-PRISONER: Crisis Intervention

Vann v. Vandenbrook, 596 F.Supp.2d 1238 (.D.Wis. 2009). A prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against a crisis intervention worker, registered nurse, and several corrections officers, alleging deliberate indifference to a serious medical need in violation of the Eighth Amendment. The prisoner moved to proceed in forma pauperis and for the appointment of counsel. The district court granted the motion to proceed in part and denied in part, and denied the motion for appointment of counsel. The court held that the prisoner stated a [section] 1983 claim against the intervention worker and the unknown officer where they were aware of the prisoner's suicide risk when the worker refused to place the prisoner in an observation program and the officer provided the prisoner with a razor and a nail clipper and left the prisoner unattended. The court found that the registered nurse's failure to provide treatment to the prisoner constituted deliberate indifference to the prisoner's serious medical needs, as required for the prisoner to state a [section] 1983 claim for violation of the Eighth Amendment, where the prisoner had sustained 133 self-inflicted wounds that were bleeding and the nurse merely inspected his wounds. According to the court, the corrections officers who performed an emergency cell extraction of the prisoner following his suicide attempt, transported him to a day room where the prison's registered nurse performed an inspection of the prisoner's wounds, thus precluding the prisoner's [section] 1983 claim against the officer for deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs in violation of Eighth Amendment.

The court held that the prisoner's proffered reasons for appointment of counsel--that the case was legally and factually complex, that the claim required the testimony of medical experts, and that he lacked legal training to present the case, especially in front of a jury, were universal among pro se litigants and thus constituted insufficient grounds for the appointment of counsel. (Columbia Correctional Institution, Wisconsin)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Medical Care, Wrongful Death

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Medical Screening, Procedures

29. MEDICAL CARE: Deliberate Indifference, Denial, Medication

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Intake Screening, Medication, Segregation

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Medical Care, Intake Screening

Vaughn v. Gray, 557 F.3d 904 (8th Cir. 2009). A detainee's sister brought a [section] 1983 action against several officers and county employees alleging they were deliberately indifferent to the detainee's serious medical needs which resulted in his death. The district court denied the defendants' motion for summary judgment based on qualified immunity and the defendants appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that a genuine issue of material fact existed as to whether jail officials deliberately disregarded the medical needs and condition of the detainee. The detainee was charged with first-degree sexual assault. During the jail's intake procedure, he completed a medical intake form, indicating that he had a history of mental illness, headaches, epilepsy/seizures, ulcers, and kidney/bladder problems, but indicating that he did not have a history of heart problems or high or low blood pressure. Although the detainee had no medications with him upon his arrival at the jail, his mother later brought his medications, including an anti-depressant. He received his medication for several days until the prescription ran out. He missed several doses before a new prescription arrived. During the time he was without medication, his cellmate told jail employees that the detainee had been ingesting shampoo and engaging in other odd behavior. The detainee was moved to an isolation cell to be monitored on an hourly basis. He was observed vomiting and asked to see a nurse but he was not provided access. He was later found dead in his cell. An autopsy determined that he died of natural causes: arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease, causing a heart attack that resulted in his death. (Greene County Jail, Arkansas)

27. LIABILITY: Policies/Procedures, Sanctions, Settlement

33. PRIVACY: Observation by Staff, Telephone Calls

47. TRANSFERS: Equal Protection, Facility, Transfer

Walker v. Gomez, 609 F.Supp.2d 1149 (S.D.Cal. 2009). A prisoner brought an action against the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, alleging violations of their settlement agreement with the prisoner that resulted from a prior complaint, discrimination based on race as a policy, and retaliation. The prisoner moved to enforce the settlement agreement and for monetary sanctions. The court held that the prison officials' conduct of placing the prisoner under lockdown for a period of 10 days following incidents of riots and attempted murder was not a severe restriction on the prisoner's activities amounting to a breach of the terms of the prior settlement agreement.

The court found that prison officials did not violate the settlement agreement's requirement that they implemented policies and procedures within the prison system which held inmates accountable for their own individual conduct rather than institute prison-wide lockdowns based on race.

The court held that a prison counselor's conduct of asking the prisoner if he wished to transfer to another prison that would cater to his "sensitive needs" was not in retaliation in violation of the settlement agreement. The court noted that the act of asking the prisoner if he would like to volunteer for a transfer was simply because a new facility was in place and inmates were needed to successfully operate it, and, moreover, the counselor testified that she asked the same question of other inmates and she posted a sign on her office window conveying the same inquiry she posed to prisoner, and, further, the prisoner was never transferred.

According to the court, a prison counselor's conduct of staying in the same room as the prisoner while he completed confidential calls did not amount to retaliation in violation of the settlement agreement. (Calipatria State Prison, California)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Policies/Procedures

9. CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT: Lighting

10. CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT: Lighting, Medical Care, Security

15. FACILITIES: Lights, Security

39. SAFETY AND SECURITY: Lighting

Walker v. Woodford, 593 F.Supp.2d 1140 (S.D.Cal. 2008). A state prisoner filed a civil rights action against a prison and its personnel alleging that prison officials violated his Eighth Amendment rights by refusing to turn off the lights in their cells. The defendants filed a motion for summary judgment. The district court granted the motion. The court held that the prisoner had to present evidence showing that the prison's 24-hour illumination policy was the cause of his insomnia or related problems before the prison could be required to explain why legitimate penological interests justified it. According to the court, the prisoner's testimony did not establish that the illumination caused the unnecessary and wanton infliction of pain, or that prison personnel were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs in not modifying the illumination policy. The court found that prison officials were not plainly incompetent in requiring low-level lighting in prison cells 24 hours per day for security purposes. (Calipatria State Prison, California)

32. PRETRIAL DETENTION: Probable Cause, Release, Use of Force

36. RELEASE: Timely Release

48. USE OF FORCE: Excessive Force

Wasserman v. Rodacker, 557 F.3d 635 (D.C. Cir. 2009). An arrestee brought an action against the government and a police officer, alleging tort and constitutional claims based on his arrest for violating a leash law and assaulting a police officer. The government substituted itself as a defendant and moved to dismiss. The district court dismissed the tort claims and granted summary judgment on the constitutional claims. The arrestee appealed. The appeals court affirmed. The court held that the government properly substituted itself as a party defendant and that the force used in the arrest was reasonable. The court found that the arrestee's detention was not unreasonable, in violation of Fourth Amendment, despite having been premised on an assault charge that was later dropped by the government, where the length of detention was less than 48 hours, and the arrestee failed to allege that the delay of a probable cause hearing was a result of ill will or some other malicious purpose. (District of Columbia, Metropolitan Police Department Central Cell Block)

14. FAILURE TO PROTECT: Suicide Attempt, Suicide

27. LIABILITY: Failure to Protect, Failure to Train, Negligence

30. MENTAL PROBLEMS (PRISONER): Suicide

36. RELEASE: Failure to Protect, Timely Release

46. TRAINING: Failure to Train

Wilson v. Taylor, 597 F.Supp.2d 451 (D.Del. 2009). The mother of a deceased prisoner, who died in his solitary cell as a result of asphyxia due to hanging after an apparent attempt to feign suicide, brought a [section] 1983 action against Delaware Corrections officials. The district court denied the defendants' motion for summary judgment. The court held that fact issues precluded summary judgment on the mother's [section] 1983 claim, custom or policies claim, deliberate indifference claim, qualified immunity grounds, wrongful death claim, and claim for punitive damages. The court found genuine issues of material fact as to: (1) whether the prisoner's detention was valid at the time of his death; (2) whether Delaware Corrections officials failed to train and or maintain customs, policies, practices, or procedures, relating to the prisoner's repeated release inquiry; (3) whether Delaware Corrections officials' ignored the prisoner's risk of hurting himself to get the attention of guards as to his repeated release inquiries; (4) whether a correctional officer acted in good faith and without gross or wanton negligence in throwing the prisoner against a bench in his cell while holding his throat and threatening him verbally; and (5) whether Delaware Corrections officials' conduct in ignoring the prisoner's repeated release inquiries was a proximate cause of the prisoner's ultimate death. The court also found that fact issues existed as to whether Delaware Corrections officials acted outrageously and with reckless indifference to the rights of others, precluding summary judgment on the mother's [section] 1983 claim for punitive damages. (Delaware Correctional Center)

33. PRIVACY: DNA, Records

41. SEARCHES: DNA-Deoxy Ribonucleic Acid, Privacy

44. STANDARDS: State Statutes

Wilson v. Wilkinson, 608 F.Supp.2d 891 (S.D.Ohio 2007). A state prisoner brought a [section] 1983 action against state officials, challenging the constitutionality of a state statute requiring the collection of DNA specimens from convicted felons. The parties cross-moved for summary judgment. The district court held that the collection of a DNA specimen was not an unreasonable search and seizure, and that a DNA sample did not implicate the prisoner's Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination. The court noted that law enforcement's interest in obtaining DNA for a database to solve past and future crimes outweighed the prisoner's diminished privacy rights. According to the court, the prisoner did not have a fundamental privacy interest protected by substantive due process in the information contained in a DNA sample and the profile obtained pursuant to the state statute. The court noted that the prisoner, as a convicted felon, did not enjoy the same privacy rights as did ordinary citizens. (Ross Correctional Institution, Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction)

27. LIABILITY: Contract Services, Private Operator

36. RELEASE: Timely Release

Wormley v. U.S., 601 F.Supp.2d 27 (D.D.C. 2009). A detainee brought an action against private correctional entities, the District of Columbia, the federal government and officials, stemming from an alleged five-month jail over-detention. The court held that the conduct of federal officials in allegedly causing the five-month jail over-detention did not violate a clearly established federal right of which a reasonable officer would have known, for the purposes of the officials' qualified immunity defense to the detainee's Fifth Amendment claim, since the officials did not participate in the actual over-detention. The court found that the private correctional vendor sued by the detainee, stemming from an alleged five-month jail over-detention, was acting "under color of state law," for purposes of the detainee's [section] 1983 claims, since the vendor was performing a traditional government function by administering the District of Columbia Correctional Treatment Facility. (Washington Halfway Homes, Fairview Halfway House, Correctional Treatment Facility, Corrections Corporation of America, District of Columbia)

2. ADMINISTRATION: Policies/Procedures

17. FEMALE PRISONERS: Clothing, Privacy

25. INTAKE AND ADMISSIONS: Identification, Procedures

37. RELIGION: Clothing, Free Exercise

Zargary v. The City of New York, 607 F.Supp.2d 609 (S.D.N.Y. 2009). A prisoner, who wore a headscarf as an Orthodox Jew, brought an action against a city, alleging that the city's practice or custom of removing head coverings from prisoners before taking photographs during admittance to a correctional facility violated her rights under the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment. The court entered judgment in favor of the city. The court held that the city correctional facility's practice or custom of removing head coverings from prisoners before taking photographs during their admittance to a facility was rationally related to the legitimate penological interest of being able to identify prisoners accurately to maintain security, and that the practice did not violate the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment. The court noted that the prisoner could dramatically change her appearance by removing the headscarf, making it more difficult to identify her, which would pose a security risk. According to the court, the prisoner had other means to express her religious beliefs in prison, the corrections officers attempted to accommodate the prisoner by minimizing the presence of male officers in the room when the photograph was taken, and the alternative of not removing the headscarf could not be said to pose only a de minimis security risk. (Rose M. Singer Correctional Facility, New York)
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Publication:Detentions and Corrections Caselaw Quarterly
Article Type:Case overview
Date:May 1, 2010
Words:22296
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Next Article:Part 1: complete case summaries in alphabetical order.
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