University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Katka v. State of Montana JI-MT-0004
Docket / Court BDV 2009-1163 ( State Court )
State/Territory Montana
Case Type(s) Juvenile Institution
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
In 2009, a teenaged prisoner with mental illness who spent over a year in solitary confinement filed a lawsuit in the Montana First Judicial District Court, Lewis and Clark County, under Montana state law, against the State of Montana . Plaintiff, represented by the Montana ACLU, asked the court ... read more >
In 2009, a teenaged prisoner with mental illness who spent over a year in solitary confinement filed a lawsuit in the Montana First Judicial District Court, Lewis and Clark County, under Montana state law, against the State of Montana . Plaintiff, represented by the Montana ACLU, asked the court for injunctive relief.

On March 30, 2012, the parties reached a partial settlement. Under the settlement, 1) juveniles cannot be placed in solitary confinement or behavior management programs for more than 72 hours without the approval of the director of the Department of Corrections, 2) juveniles will initially be placed in the lowest category of confinement unless they have a significant institutional history or have been convicted of a severe offense, 3) classification of juvenile inmates will take into account their unique needs for education and mental and medical treatment and their lack of full maturity, 4) mentally ill prisoners cannot be placed into solitary confinement if it is determined it will harm their mental health, and those who are placed in solitary confinement must receive private treatment sessions with a mental health professional as often as necessary, and 5) suicidal inmates cannot be placed in behavior management programs.

No docket is available, for this court. But this case is ongoing.

Gregory Pitt - 07/23/2012


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Content of Injunction
Reporting
Disability
Mental impairment
General
Classification / placement
Conditions of confinement
Confinement/isolation
Juveniles
Suicide prevention
Unconstitutional conditions of confinement
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, unspecified
Suicide prevention
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Defendant(s) Montana Department of Corrections
State of Montana
Plaintiff Description Juvenile prisoner in Montana State Prison System.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought Unknown
Class action status granted Unknown
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration 2012 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Press Release 04/16/2011
JI-MT-0004-0001 PDF | Detail
Settlement Agreement 03/30/2012
JI-MT-0004-0002 PDF | Detail
Document Source:
Judges None on record
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Ellingson, Jon (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0001
Giuttari, Jennifer (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0001 | JI-MT-0004-0002
Griffing, Betsy (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0001
Larose, Andree (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0001 | JI-MT-0004-0002
Waterman, Ronald F. (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0001 | JI-MT-0004-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Davis, Maxon R. (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0002
Snyder-Varns, Pamela (Montana)
JI-MT-0004-0002
Other Lawyers None on record

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