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Case Name Karsjens v. Minnesota Department of Human Services CJ-MN-0002
Docket / Court 0:11-cv-03659-DWF-JJK ( D. Minn. )
State/Territory Minnesota
Case Type(s) Criminal Justice (Other)
Jail Conditions
Case Summary
On December 21, 2011, patients who were civilly committed to the Minnesota Sex Offender Program filed a pro se federal lawsuit in the District of Minnesota against the Minnesota Department of Health & Human Services and the Minnesota Sex Offender Program (MSOP]. Plaintiffs asked the U.S. district ... read more >
On December 21, 2011, patients who were civilly committed to the Minnesota Sex Offender Program filed a pro se federal lawsuit in the District of Minnesota against the Minnesota Department of Health & Human Services and the Minnesota Sex Offender Program (MSOP]. Plaintiffs asked the U.S. district court for a temporary restraining order or permanent injunction, claiming that they were threatened with unfavorable treatment reports, transfers, unwarranted searches to confiscate legal materials, and termination of supervised release.

Plaintiffs sought to proceed as a class and gained representation from the state bar’s Pro Se Project. The first amended complaint was filed on March 15, 2012. Plaintiffs sought injunctive relief and damages, alleging that defendants violated the Due Process Clause, the First Amendment, the Fourth Amendment, the Minnesota Constitution, and the Minnesota Civil Commitment and Treatment Act. Specifically, plaintiffs alleged that the defendants failed to provide adequate treatment to the plaintiff class; punished class members instead of treating them; denied class members less restrictive alternative confinement, and incarcerated them under inhumane conditions; denied them religious freedom, free speech, and free association; and subjected them to unreasonable searches and seizures.

In or around 2008, a new Executive Director of the MSOP program was hired, and he was alleged to have imposed more restrictive policies. Plaintiffs allege that they have vague treatment plans, a lack of qualified clinical staff, and that they have been denied proper medications and treatments. Plaintiffs allege that punishments include solitary confinement, denial of group therapy, denial of exercise, denial of employment opportunities, and denial of treatment. They also allege that the double-bunking of sexual offenders has led to increased physical and sexual assaults. They claim that they are subjected to intrusive searches without reasonable suspicion, and that legal correspondence is searched. Plaintiffs also claim that only one patient has been released without revocation of discharge. There are many more specific details in the complaint.

On January 25, 2012 and again on February 6, 2012, the Court [Judge Michael J. Davis] stayed all pending MSOP cases.

On July 24, 2012, the parties filed an agreement with the Court, outlining protections against searches of plaintiffs' legal materials. On July 24, 2012 the Court [Judge Donovan W. Frank] certified the plaintiff class of "All patients currently civilly committed in the Minnesota Sex Offender Program pursuant to Min.. Stat. § 253B." (Karsjens v. Jesson, 283 F.R.D. 514 (D. Minn. 2012)). Because of these developments, on July 26, 2012, the Court [J. Frank] held that the plaintiffs' motion for a temporary restraining order was moot.

On August 15, 2012, the Court [Magistrate Judge Arthur J. Boylan] found that further study was necessary to address these issues. The Court ordered that the Minnesota Commissioner of Human Services create a Sex Offender Civil Commitment Advisory Task Force for two years. The Court ordered that the Task Force shall provide the Commissioner with recommendations on less restrictive alternatives and other recommended legislative reforms. On October 5, 2012, the Court [J. Boylan] issued an order affirming the appointment of specific individuals to the Task Force. On December 13, 2012, the Court [Magistrate Judge Jeffrey J. Keyes] approved five more appointments to the Task Force.

Settlement conferences have been held, but the litigation continues.

Emily Goldman - 02/28/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Free Exercise Clause
Freedom of speech/association
Unreasonable search and seizure
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
General
Conditions of confinement
Confidentiality
Counseling
Discharge & termination plans
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Disparate Treatment
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Grievance Procedures
Law library access
Library (non-law) access
Loss or damage to property
Mail
Over/Unlawful Detention
Parents (visitation, involvement)
Pattern or Practice
Phone
Records Disclosure
Recreation / Exercise
Rehabilitation
Religious programs / policies
Restraints : physical
Sanitation / living conditions
Search policies
Sex offender regulation
Sexual abuse by residents/inmates
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Strip search policy
Totality of conditions
Unconstitutional conditions of confinement
Visiting
Work release or work assignments
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Medication, administration of
Mental health care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Minnesota Department of Human Services
Minnesota Sex Offender Program
Plaintiff Description "All patients currently civilly committed in the Minnesota Sex Offender Program pursuant to Min.. Stat. § 253B."
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party not on record
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None yet

Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
0:11-cv-03659-DWF-JJK (D. Minn.) 05/16/2013
CJ-MN-0002-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Violation of Civil Rights Pursuant to 42 IJ.S.C. 1983 Jury Trial DEMANDED 12/15/2011
CJ-MN-0002-0012 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum of Law in Support of Application for Temporary Restraining Order/Preliminary Injunction 12/21/2011
CJ-MN-0002-0004 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended Order (staying cases) 02/06/2012 (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0005 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
First Amended Complaint 03/15/2012
CJ-MN-0002-0007 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion for Restraining Order 06/28/2012
CJ-MN-0002-0006 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in support of Amended Motion for Class Certification 06/28/2012
CJ-MN-0002-0008 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
State Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification 07/13/2012
CJ-MN-0002-0009 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Certifying Class Pursuant to Rule 23(b)(2) 07/24/2012 (283 F.R.D. 514) (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0002 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Agreement 07/24/2012
CJ-MN-0002-0010 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Denying Temporary Restraining Order] 07/26/2012 (2012 WL 3061863) (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0003 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Creating Sex Offender Civil Commitment Advisory Task Force] 08/15/2012 (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0001 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Regarding Sex Offender Civil Commitment Advisory Task Force 10/15/2012 (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0013 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 12/04/2012 (2012 WL 6044652) (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0014 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Regarding the MSOP Program Evaluation Team 12/13/2012 (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0015 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 02/26/2013 (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0016 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Boylan, Arthur J. (D. Minn.) [Magistrate]
CJ-MN-0002-0001 | CJ-MN-0002-0013
Davis, Michael J. (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0005
Frank, Donovan W. (D. Minn.)
CJ-MN-0002-0002 | CJ-MN-0002-0003 | CJ-MN-0002-0014 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Keyes, Jeffrey J. Court not on record
CJ-MN-0002-0015 | CJ-MN-0002-0016 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Borrelli, Raina (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-9000
Challeen, Raina (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0006 | CJ-MN-0002-0008
Gluek, Karla (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0006 | CJ-MN-0002-0008 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Goodwin, David A. (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0006 | CJ-MN-0002-0008 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Gustafson, Daniel E. (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0006 | CJ-MN-0002-0007 | CJ-MN-0002-0008 | CJ-MN-0002-0010 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Alpert, Steven H (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0010 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Figueroa, Ricardo (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-0009 | CJ-MN-0002-9000 | CJ-MN-0002-9000
Kieley, Max H. (Minnesota)
CJ-MN-0002-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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