University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Rhodes v. Seay JC-GA-0032
Docket / Court 1:91-cv-02908-ODE ( N.D. Ga. )
State/Territory Georgia
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
On November 25, 1991, an inmate detained at Cherokee County Jail filed a civil rights suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 on behalf of jail inmates in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, challenging conditions of confinement at the Jail. Plaintiff sought declaratory and ... read more >
On November 25, 1991, an inmate detained at Cherokee County Jail filed a civil rights suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 on behalf of jail inmates in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, challenging conditions of confinement at the Jail. Plaintiff sought declaratory and injunctive relief, and immediately moved for class certification.

The District Court (Judge Orinda D. Evans) denied without prejudice the motion to certify class action by order dated May 7, 2002. Shortly thereafter, the parties engaged in settlement negotiations and participated in settlement conferences with the Court. Eventually a deal was struck and the Court formally entered a Consent Order on December 7, 1992. The Order specified agreed reforms on virtually all aspects of confinement, including: population caps; separate female quarters, staffing, restraints, food service, visitation, phone privileges, access to reading materials, recreation, mail, access to attorneys, medical and dental care, disciplinary procedures and improvements to the physical plant. The Court administratively closed the case, but retained jurisdiction to monitor compliance with the Order.

In October 2002, the County constructed a new jail. The old jail was still used, but for the sole purpose of providing sleeping quarters for inmate workers.

Five years later, the County moved to terminate the Consent Order under the Prison Litigation Reform Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3626(b)(1)(B). In support of its motion, the County asserted that it had rectified all areas addressed in the Consent Order and that the construction of the new jail made the Order moot. The Court directed plaintiffs to respond to the motion by specifying any ongoing constitutional violations which existed at the Jail. Plaintiffs responded that the motion was untimely and requested an evidentiary hearing, without citing any ongoing violations. On July 2, 2007, the Court terminated the Consent Order and dismissed the case.

Dan Dalton - 10/04/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Administrative segregation
Bathing and hygiene
Classification / placement
Disciplinary procedures
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Law library access
Mail
Phone
Recreation / Exercise
Religious programs / policies
Restraints : chemical
Restraints : physical
Sanitation / living conditions
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Totality of conditions
Visiting
Medical/Mental Health
Dental care
Medical care, general
Medication, administration of
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Cherokee County Sheriff's Office
Plaintiff Description Inmates at the Cherokee County Jail, incarcerated after 1991
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1992 - 2007
Case Closing Year 2007
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies After Decision: Implementation of Judicial Decrees in Correctional Settings
Written: Oct. 01, 1977
By: M. Kay Harris & Dudley P. Spiller (Temple University)
Citation: (1977)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ]

Docket(s)
1:91-cv-02908-ODE (N.D. Ga.) 07/19/2007
JC-GA-0032-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Consent Order 12/07/1992 (N.D. Ga.)
JC-GA-0032-0001.pdf | Detail
Cherokee Sheriff's Office Adult Detention Center - Institutional Operations 09/05/2006
JC-GA-0032-0004.pdf | Detail
Motion to Terminate Consent Order 02/22/2007
JC-GA-0032-0002.pdf | Detail
Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion to Terminate Consent Order 02/22/2007
JC-GA-0032-0003.pdf | Detail
Response (to Motion to Terminate) 03/05/2007
JC-GA-0032-0005.pdf | Detail
Order 07/02/2007 (N.D. Ga.)
JC-GA-0032-0007.pdf | Detail
Cherokee Sheriff's Office - Consent Order Terminated 09/25/2007
JC-GA-0032-0006.pdf | Detail
Judges Evans, Orinda Dale (N.D. Ga.)
JC-GA-0032-0001 | JC-GA-0032-0007 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Goldberg, Ralph S. (Georgia)
JC-GA-0032-0001 | JC-GA-0032-0002 | JC-GA-0032-0003 | JC-GA-0032-0005 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Mabry, M. Linda (Georgia)
JC-GA-0032-0001 | JC-GA-0032-0002 | JC-GA-0032-0003 | JC-GA-0032-0005 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Hirsch, Michelle J. (Georgia)
JC-GA-0032-0002 | JC-GA-0032-0003 | JC-GA-0032-0005 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Mahler, Robert Mark (Georgia)
JC-GA-0032-0001 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Maine, Dana Kristin (Georgia)
JC-GA-0032-0002 | JC-GA-0032-0003 | JC-GA-0032-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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