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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Jones v. Hayman PC-NJ-0016
Docket / Court C-123-07 ( State Court )
State/Territory New Jersey
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On December 12, 2007, more than 40 women prisoners filed a class action suit against the New Jersey Department of Corrections in the Superior Court of New Jersey, under various provisions of state law. Plaintiffs, who were represented by the ACLU of New Jersey and the ACLU's Women's Rights Project, ... read more >
On December 12, 2007, more than 40 women prisoners filed a class action suit against the New Jersey Department of Corrections in the Superior Court of New Jersey, under various provisions of state law. Plaintiffs, who were represented by the ACLU of New Jersey and the ACLU's Women's Rights Project, sought injunctive and declaratory relief, challenging their transfer and subsequent treatment as violative of their due process and equal protection rights, their right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment, and their right to privacy.

In March 2007, the DOC arbitrarily transferred plaintiffs from a women's prison to a maximum-security men's prison. There, the women prisoners were allegedly confined to their cells for up to 22 hours a day. Plaintiffs alleged that they were also deprived of access to the prison law library, school, medical facilities, and main recreational yard. The complaint also states that the women prisoners were subject to catcalls and harassment and were denied access to basic hygiene.

On January 10, 2008, plaintiffs moved for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction prohibiting any further transfer of women prisoners to the men's prison. Shortly thereafter, the parties entered into a consent order that, with limited exception for women inmates transferred to administrative segregation or stabilization units, prohibited any further transfers pending future actions by the court.

Defendants continued to actively oppose plaintiff's motions for class certification and preliminary injunctive relief. On July 21, 2008, the court (Judge Maria M. Spyek) granted plaintiff's motion for class certification and for an injunction prohibiting DOC from transferring more women to the men's prison while the case proceeded in court.

On September 3, 2008, the DOC transferred all women at the men's prison back to the women's prison. In May 2009, the court (Judge Spyek) granted defendant's motion for summary judgment, dismissing the case as moot. The court also denied plaintiffs' request for attorney's costs, finding that they were not a "prevailing party" because they did not obtain a judgment on the merits, their suit did not have a basis in law, and the legal action "did not play a role" in the DOC's decision to transfer women prisoners back to the women's prison.

Plaintiffs subsequently appealed the trial court's decision denying attorney's fees. The New Jersey Appellate Division court (Judge Jose Fuentes) reversed and remanded, holding that (1) the trial court should have held a hearing to determine whether DOC's actions were causally related to the lawsuit, and (2) the relief obtained by the prisoners had a basis in law.

The case was settled at the beginning of July 2011.

Priyah Kaul - 03/16/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Equal Protection
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Defendant-type
Corrections
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Bathing and hygiene
Classification / placement
Conditions of confinement
Law library access
Totality of conditions
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Defendant(s) New Jersey Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description New Jersey women prisoners transferred to men's prison.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Attorneys fees
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2011
Case Ongoing Unknown
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Civil Rights Injunctions Over Time: A Case Study of Jail and Prison Court Orders
N.Y.U. Law Review
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University)
Citation: 81 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 550 (2006)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Judicial Policy Making and the Modern State: How the Courts Reformed America's Prisons
By: Malcolm M. Feeley & Edward Rubin (UC Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law & Vanderbilt School of Law Faculty)
Citation: (1998)
[ Detail ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Civil Action Class Action Complaint 12/01/2007
PC-NJ-0016-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: ACLU National Prison Project
Plaintiffs' Brief in Support of Motion for Sanctions 03/25/2008
PC-NJ-0016-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: ACLU National Prison Project
Motion to Dismiss Complaint 07/21/2008
PC-NJ-0016-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: ACLU National Prison Project
Motion for Class Certification 07/21/2008
PC-NJ-0016-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: ACLU National Prison Project
Motion for Preliminary Injunction 07/21/2008
PC-NJ-0016-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: ACLU National Prison Project
Opinion (State Appellate Court) 02/25/2011 (13 A.3d 416)
PC-NJ-0016-0006.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Fuentes, Jose (State Appellate Court)
PC-NJ-0016-0006
Spyek, Maria M. (State Trial Court)
PC-NJ-0016-0005
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Barocas, Edward (New Jersey)
PC-NJ-0016-0001 | PC-NJ-0016-0002
Lapidus, Lenora M. (New Jersey)
PC-NJ-0016-0001 | PC-NJ-0016-0002
Lewis, Mie (New York)
PC-NJ-0016-0001 | PC-NJ-0016-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Moratti, Dianne M. (New Jersey)
PC-NJ-0016-0003 | PC-NJ-0016-0004
Other Lawyers None on record

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