University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Santos v. Kimoto PC-HI-0003
Docket / Court 1:12-cv-00259-SOM-BMK ( D. Haw. )
State/Territory Hawaii
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On May 15, 2012, four women represented by the ACLU filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii against state officials in Hawaii's Department of Public Safety under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for interference with their 14th Amendment right to marry. The four women's fiancés were ... read more >
On May 15, 2012, four women represented by the ACLU filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii against state officials in Hawaii's Department of Public Safety under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for interference with their 14th Amendment right to marry. The four women's fiancés were prisoners in Hawaii's custody (though some were in Arizona prisons) and were required to complete an application to have their marriage approved. The women alleged that this burden on their right to marry was imposed without a legitimate state interest. The ACLU, which had previously intervened on behalf of an unrelated prisoner who had been denied marriage approval because of his status, had been given assurances that a new policy would be promulgated and followed to prevent unconstitutional denials of marriage. The women alleged that the various officials continued even under the new policy to deny marriage on the basis of prisoner status. Plaintiffs sought monetary, declarative and injunctive relief, including damages and attorneys' fees.

On May 29, 2012, Plaintiffs filed an amended motion for a preliminary injunction and an amended complaint that dropped one of the women from the case. On June 5, 2012, Defendants filed motions to dismiss Plaintiffs' claims for lack of jurisdiction and failure to join a required party, claiming that the women could not sue to advance the prisoners' marriage interests and that the prisoners should have been joined in the suit. On July 5, 2012, the parties stipulated to dismiss a second plaintiff from the case. The parties then stipulated to various facts on July 9, 2012.

On July 19, 2012, the district court (Judge Susan Oki Mollway) denied the state's motion to dismiss, ruling that Plaintiffs had standing because they were seeking redress for infringement of their own rights to marry and that the prisoners were not required parties. On August 2, 2012, the court granted Plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction, requiring the state to allow Plaintiffs to marry their fiancés without further interference and without reapplication. 2012 WL 3202222.

On May 28, 2013, the district court approved the parties' stipulation for dismissal with prejudice. Because of the preliminary injunction, the remaining plaintiffs had married their fiancés. The parties came to a settlement that included damages, attorneys' fees, and a mild policy change. Under the settlement, Defendants were to pay $86,871.21 ($25,000 to both plaintiffs, $35,000 in fees to the ACLU, and $1871.21 in costs to the ACLU); the new marriage policy was to be included in marriage application materials; and the Director of Public Safety was to issue an internal memorandum instructing officials to presume marriage applications should be approved unless they violate the policy. The case is closed.

Kenneth Gray - 07/09/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Marriage
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Hawaii
Plaintiff Description Four women who were unable to marry their imprisoned fiances had been denied the approval that Hawaii's Department of Public Safety requires for prisoners to marry.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Voluntary Dismissal
Order Duration 2013 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2013
Case Ongoing No
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 ]

  Limited Partnership
http://www.limitedpartnershipmovie.com/
By: Thomas G. Miller
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  United States Government says L.A. Gay Couple’s 1975 Marriage is Valid
The Pride L.A.
Written: Jun. 07, 2016
By: Troy Masters
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:12−cv−00259 (D. Haw.) 09/06/2012
PC-HI-0003-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Damages and Declaratory and Injunctive Relief; Summons in a Civil Case 05/15/2012
PC-HI-0003-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source:
Amended Complaint for Damages and Declaratory and Injunctive Relief 05/29/2012
PC-HI-0003-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulated Facts 07/10/2012
PC-HI-0003-0013.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Denying Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction and Denying Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Inability to Join Required Parties 07/19/2012 (2012 WL 2974225) (D. Haw.)
PC-HI-0003-0015.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Order Granting Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction 08/02/2012 (2012 WL 3202222) (D. Haw.)
PC-HI-0003-0014.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Stipulation for Dismissal with Prejudice Pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 41(A)(1)(A)(Ii) and 41(A)(2) and [Proposed] Order 05/28/2013 (D. Haw.)
PC-HI-0003-0016.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Kurren, Barry M. (D. Haw.) [Magistrate]
PC-HI-0003-9000
Mollway, Susan Oki (D. Haw.)
PC-HI-0003-0014 | PC-HI-0003-0015 | PC-HI-0003-0016 | PC-HI-0003-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Gluck, Daniel M (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0001 | PC-HI-0003-0003 | PC-HI-0003-0013 | PC-HI-0003-0016 | PC-HI-0003-9000
Molay, John F. (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0013 | PC-HI-0003-0016 | PC-HI-0003-9000
Perrin, Lois K (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0003 | PC-HI-0003-0013 | PC-HI-0003-9000
Temple, Laurie A. (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0001 | PC-HI-0003-0003 | PC-HI-0003-0013 | PC-HI-0003-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Inagaki, Caron M. (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0013
Louie, David M. (Hawaii)
PC-HI-0003-0013
Other Lawyers None on record

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