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Case Name Collins v. Reish JC-PA-0029
Docket / Court 4:08-CV-00345 ( M.D. Pa. )
State/Territory Pennsylvania
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
On February 25, 2008 a group of pre-trial detainees at Northumberland County Prison filed suit in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania against the Northumberland County Prison and the Northumberland County Prison Board. Their cause of action was 42 U.S.C. § 1983 ... read more >
On February 25, 2008 a group of pre-trial detainees at Northumberland County Prison filed suit in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania against the Northumberland County Prison and the Northumberland County Prison Board. Their cause of action was 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and they alleged violations of the First, Sixth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Specifically they claim that there was inadequate medical care, dental care, and mental health care. They claimed that the facility was a life-threatening fire hazard, that there were chronic environmental problems, that the women's facility was overcrowded, that there was inadequate clothing provided, that there was no confidential space to meet with attorneys, that disciplinary and restraint procedures were unconstitutional, and that women were discriminated against in relation to outdoor exercise, work release, and other programs. They sought class certification, declaratory and injunctive relief, and attorney's fees and costs.

On June 11, 2008, the court (Judge John E. Jones III) denied the plaintiffs' motion for class certification without prejudice. On March 17, 2009, the court (Judge Jones) disposed of three pending motions that had arisen during discovery. It granted in part and denied in part the defendants' motion to dismiss, granted the plaintiffs' motion to supplement the complaint, and granted in part and denied in part the plaintiffs' motion to certify the class. The class consisted of all inmates of the Northumberland County Prison but some of the claims plaintiffs sought to have included were denied as proper claims for the class to raise.

On April 29, 2011, the court granted the parties' joint motion for a settlement agreement. The settlement stipulated that the prison would provide increased medical, dental, and mental health care. It also requires written policies and protocols relating to that care. Additionally, the settlement mandates changes to discipline and restraint practices, better conditions in the basement cells, improved heating and cooling units, extermination of pests, improved fire safety, limitations on the population in the women's dormitory, and changes to the policies in the women's dormitory concerning discipline and recreation. The court dismissed the action and retained jurisdiction for a period of 15 months after the entry of the settlement agreement.

Michael Perry - 04/19/2011
Erin Chapman - 02/04/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Content of Injunction
Monitoring
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Defendant-type
Corrections
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Bathing and hygiene
Disciplinary procedures
Fire safety
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Recreation / Exercise
Restraints : physical
Sanitation / living conditions
Totality of conditions
Medical/Mental Health
Dental care
Medical care, general
Mental health care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Northumberland County Prison
Northumberland County Prison Board
Plaintiff Description Inmates of the Northumberland County Prison
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2011 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2011
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)
4:08-CV-00345 (M.D. Pa.) 05/23/2011
JC-PA-0029-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint - Class Action 02/25/2008
JC-PA-0029-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Motion for Class Certification 03/12/2008
JC-PA-0029-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order (Denying the motion to certify the class without prejudice) 06/11/2008 (M.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0029-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order (Granting in part and denying in part the motion to dismiss, granting plaintiff's motion to supplement the complaint, and granting in part and denying in part the motion to certify the class) 03/17/2009 (M.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0029-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment, Certificate of Service 04/30/2010
JC-PA-0029-0007.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Corrected Joint Motion Seeking Approval of Class Action Settlement 02/18/2011
JC-PA-0029-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Agreement 02/18/2011
JC-PA-0029-0006.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 02/28/2011 (M.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0029-0009.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum 04/29/2011
JC-PA-0029-0008.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 04/29/2011 (M.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0029-0010.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Jones, John E. III (M.D. Pa.)
JC-PA-0029-0003 | JC-PA-0029-0004 | JC-PA-0029-0005 | JC-PA-0029-0006 | JC-PA-0029-0008 | JC-PA-0029-0009 | JC-PA-0029-0010 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Smyser, J. Andrew (M.D. Pa.) [Magistrate]
JC-PA-0029-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Humes, Cheryl T. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0001 | JC-PA-0029-0002 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Krakoff, Jere (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0001 | JC-PA-0029-0002 | JC-PA-0029-0005 | JC-PA-0029-0006 | JC-PA-0029-0007 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Tobin, Jennifer J. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0005 | JC-PA-0029-0006 | JC-PA-0029-0007 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Dadamo, Gary H. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-9000
Godfrey, E. Ralph (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-9000
Hanna, Robert G. Jr. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0005 | JC-PA-0029-0006 | JC-PA-0029-0007 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Jacob, Devon M. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-9000
Lavery, Frank J. Jr. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0006 | JC-PA-0029-0007 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Young, James D. (Pennsylvania)
JC-PA-0029-0007 | JC-PA-0029-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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