University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Taggart v. Solano County JI-CA-0022
Docket / Court 2:05-cv-00783-RRB-GGH ( E.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Juvenile Institution
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Case Summary
On April 21, 2005, private attorney Mark E. Merin filed a class action civil rights lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, challenging the Solano County and Solano County Probation Department policy of subjecting juveniles to ... read more >
On April 21, 2005, private attorney Mark E. Merin filed a class action civil rights lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, challenging the Solano County and Solano County Probation Department policy of subjecting juveniles to strip and/or visual body cavity searches at Solano County Juvenile Detention Center. Plaintiffs alleged that pursuant to the defendants' policies, juvenile detainees in their custody were subjected to strip and visual body cavity searches before such they appeared at a detention hearing and without having any reasonable suspicion that the searches would be productive of contraband or weapons. The complaint asserted claims for violations of: 1) violation of Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments and 42 U.S.C. § 1983; 2) violation of California's Bane Act, California Civil Code section 52.1(a) and Unruh Civil Rights Act, California Civil Code section 52.1(b), based on alleged use of coercion to deprive Plaintiffs of their rights under article I, section 1, of the California Constitution and California Penal Code section 4030; 3) violation of California Penal Code section 4030. Plaintiffs sought monetary damages, declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as class certification.

Defendants filed answers generally denying all allegations of wrong doing or liability. They also moved to dismiss the state law claims. The District Court (Judge David F. Levi) granted the motion in part and dismissed the state law claims for damages and the class claim under Section 52.1. The motion to dismiss the state law claims for declaratory and injunctive relief was denied. Taggart ex rel. Perry v. Solano County, 2005 WL 3325752 (E.D.Cal. Dec 06, 2005)

Discovery followed and then defendants moved for judgment on the pleadings or summary adjudication on plaintiff's 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims asserting that the County was shielded by the Eleventh Amendment and that the individual defendants were protected by qualified immunity. Judge Levi denied the motion. Taggart ex rel. Perry v. Solano County, 2006 WL 737017 (E.D.Cal. Mar 20, 2006).

At the time of this summary, the case was still pending.

Dan Dalton - 03/10/2008


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
General
Search policies
Strip search policy
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Solano County
Solano County Juvenile Detention Center
Plaintiff Description Juveniles who were arrested and subjected to a pre-detention hearing strip and/or visual body cavity search at Solano County’s Juvenile Detention Facility without a reasonable suspicion that the searches would be productive of contraband/weapons.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing No
Docket(s)
2:05-cv-00783-RRB-GGH (E.D. Cal.) 07/30/2007
JI-CA-0022-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint 04/21/2005
JI-CA-0022-0001.pdf | Detail
Memorandum of Opinion and Order [re: Defendants' Motion to Dismiss State Law Claims] 12/06/2005 (2005 WL 3325752 / 2005 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 31799) (E.D. Cal.)
JI-CA-0022-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum of Opinion and Order [re: Defendants' Motion for Judgment] 03/20/2006 (2006 WL 737017 / 2006 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 11353) (E.D. Cal.)
JI-CA-0022-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Order Granting Settlement and Dismissal of Action 07/30/2007 (E.D. Cal.)
JI-CA-0022-0002.pdf | Detail
Judges Beistline, Ralph R. (D. Alaska)
JI-CA-0022-0002 | JI-CA-0022-9000
Hollows, Gregory G. (E.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
JI-CA-0022-9000
Levi, David F. (E.D. Cal.)
JI-CA-0022-0003 | JI-CA-0022-0004 | JI-CA-0022-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Merin, Mark E. (California)
JI-CA-0022-0001 | JI-CA-0022-0003 | JI-CA-0022-0004 | JI-CA-0022-9000
Schwarzschild, Jeffrey I. (California)
JI-CA-0022-0003 | JI-CA-0022-0004 | JI-CA-0022-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Cassidy, Terence J (California)
JI-CA-0022-0003 | JI-CA-0022-0004 | JI-CA-0022-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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