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Case Name Ross v. Gossett PC-IL-0033
Docket / Court 3:15-cv-00309 ( S.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Attorney Organization Loevy & Loevy
Uptown People's Law Center
Case Summary
On March 19, 2015, an Illinois prisoner filed this suit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and state law against the State of Illinois. The plaintiff, represented by Loevy & Loevy and the Uptown People's Law Center, sought injunctive ... read more >
On March 19, 2015, an Illinois prisoner filed this suit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and state law against the State of Illinois. The plaintiff, represented by Loevy & Loevy and the Uptown People's Law Center, sought injunctive relief, compensatory damages, and punitive damages, both for himself individually and for a class of other similarly-situated Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) inmates. Specifically, the plaintiff claimed that during an April 2014 search of cells at Illinois River Correctional Center, the members of the IDOC tactical team "Orange Crush" beat, abused, and sexually humiliated the plaintiff, destroyed his property, and otherwise inflicted punishment for the sole purpose of causing humiliation and needless pain. Plaintiff further alleged that this conduct at Illinois River was not an aberration. Rather, Orange Crush conducted similarly abusive search procedures at three other IDOC facilities. Plaintiff sought to represent a class consisting of all IDOC inmates subjected to the 2014 shakedowns, as well as all present and future inmates of these four IDOC facilities.

In his complaint, the plaintiff alleged violations of the Eighth Amendment's Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause, when state officials intentionally, wantonly, and/or maliciously inflicted unnecessary physical and emotional pain and suffering on IDOC inmates. In addition, the plaintiff argued that the defendants' strip search procedures violate several provisions of the Prison Rape Elimination Act National Standards, 28 C.F.R. § 115. Last, plaintiff claimed that the defendants acted with the intent or knowledge that there was a high probability that their conduct would inflict severe emotional distress upon the inmates.

The case was assigned to Judge Staci M. Yandle. As of May 29, 2015, it is ongoing.

Robert Lake - 05/29/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Defendant-type
Corrections
Law-enforcement
General
Assault/abuse by staff
Conditions of confinement
Disciplinary procedures
Excessive force
Grievance Procedures
Prison Rape Elimination Act
Restraints : physical
Search policies
Sex w/ staff; sexual harassment by staff
Strip search policy
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Illinois Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Individual plaintiff and putative class of all individuals housed at Illinois River, Big Muddy River, Lawrence, and Menard who were subjected to the 2014 shakedowns, and all prisoners confined to those facilities presently or who may be so confined in the future.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Loevy & Loevy
Uptown People's Law Center
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
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 ]

  Jail Strip-Search Cases: Patterns and Participants
http://law.duke.edu/journals/lcp
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University in St. Louis)
Citation: 71 Law & Contemp. Problems 65 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ 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)
3:15-cv-309 (S.D. Ill.) 05/05/2015
PC-IL-0033-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 03/19/2015
PC-IL-0033-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Plaintiffs' counsel
Judges Yandle, Staci Michelle (S.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0033-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Grady, Sarah (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-0001 | PC-IL-0033-9000
Kanovitz, Michael I. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-0001 | PC-IL-0033-9000
Loevy, Jonathan I. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-0001 | PC-IL-0033-9000
Mills, Alan S. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-0001
Schult, Nicole (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-0001
Defendant's Lawyers Cook, Lisa A. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-9000
Fanning, Robert L. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-9000
McNaught, Karen L. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0033-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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