University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Gamez v. Ryan PC-AZ-0017
Docket / Court CV-10-2070-PHX-JWS (MEA) ( D. Ariz. )
State/Territory Arizona
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Attorney Organization ACLU National Prison Project
Case Summary
On September 27, 2010, an Arizona prisoner, Robert Gamez, brought this suit in the U.S. District Court of the District of Arizona against the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADOC), under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The plaintiff, filing pro se, asked for both declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging ... read more >
On September 27, 2010, an Arizona prisoner, Robert Gamez, brought this suit in the U.S. District Court of the District of Arizona against the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADOC), under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The plaintiff, filing pro se, asked for both declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that the ADOC violated his Fourteenth and Eighth Amendment rights by failing to provide adequate mental health services or sufficiently trained staff to deal with prisoners with mental health issues.

The District Court (Judge Frederick Martone) dismissed the original complaint with leave to amend for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Each of the first two amended complaints were also dismissed with leave to amend for the same reason.

On March 6, 2012, eighteen months after the original complaint was filed, Gamez filed a third amended complaint. The plaintiff, now represented by the ACLU National Prison Project, expanded the suit to include a class. New allegations included that the prison deprived prisoners of general health care, that prisoners did not receive adequate treatment even when they could receive care and that the defendants subjected prisoners in isolation to unconstitutional conditions.

However, in a ruling on March 21, 2012, Judge Martone dismissed the suit. He found that the sudden expansion of the case to include thirteen new plaintiffs and seeking class treatment was not "within the contemplation of the court" when it allowed for a third amended complaint. This, along with the 18-month complaint phase, led him to dismiss the case without prejudice.

On March 22, 2012, a team of lawyers from the ACLU, the Prison Law Office and private practice filed a lawsuit alleging similar claims against the ADOC. The case was filed as Parsons v. Ryan, with docket number CV12-0601-PHX-NVW. See related cases for more information.

Jonathan Forman - 07/07/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Administrative segregation
Conditions of confinement
Disciplinary segregation
Failure to train
Personal injury
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Suicide prevention
Medical/Mental Health
Dental care
Medical care, general
Mental health care, general
Suicide prevention
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Arizona Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Arizona prisoner alleging that the Arizona Department of Corrections did not provide an appropriate number of staff to treat the mentally ill
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU National Prison Project
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2012
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing PC-AZ-0018 : Parsons v. Ryan (D. Ariz.)
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)
2:10-cv-02070-JWS--MEA (D. Ariz.) 03/21/2012
PC-AZ-0017-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Civil Rights Complaint by a Prisoner 09/27/2010
PC-AZ-0017-0003 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Dismissing Complaint and Granting Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis] 01/26/2011 (D. Ariz.)
PC-AZ-0017-0002 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Civil Rights Complaint by a Prisoner [First Amended Complaint] 03/22/2011
PC-AZ-0017-0004 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Civil Rights Complaint by a Prisoner [Second Amended Complaint] 07/28/2011
PC-AZ-0017-0005 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Dismissing Second Amended Complaint] 02/29/2012 (D. Ariz.)
PC-AZ-0017-0006 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Third Amended Class Action Complaint for Injunctive and Declartatory Relief 03/06/2012
PC-AZ-0017-0001 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Reassigning Case] 03/07/2012 (D. Ariz.)
PC-AZ-0017-0007 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Dismissing Case] 03/21/2012 (D. Ariz.)
PC-AZ-0017-0008 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Aspey, Mark E. (D. Ariz.) [Magistrate]
PC-AZ-0017-9000
Martone, Frederick J. (D. Ariz.)
PC-AZ-0017-0008 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Sedwick, John W. (D. Alaska)
PC-AZ-0017-0002 | PC-AZ-0017-0006 | PC-AZ-0017-0007
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Ahlers, James A (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Alewelt, Jennifer (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Barr, Daniel C. (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Du Mee, Matthew B (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Eidenbach, Kristin T (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Fathi, David Cyrus (District of Columbia)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Fettig, Amy (District of Columbia)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Gray, John H (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Hardy, Alison (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Kendrick, Corene Thaedra (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Lyall, James Duff (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Mitchell, Caroline N. (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Norman, Sara Linda (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Pochoda, Daniel Joseph (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Ripke, Jill L (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Roberts, Douglas (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Ryerson, Thomas D (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001
Specter, Donald H. (California)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Szanto, Ruth (Arizona)
PC-AZ-0017-0001 | PC-AZ-0017-9000
Defendant's Lawyers None on record
Other Lawyers None on record

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