University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Chavez v. County of Santa Clara JC-CA-0123
Docket / Court 5:15-cv-05277 ( N.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Special Collection Solitary confinement
Attorney Organization Prison Law Office
Case Summary
On November 18, 2015, pretrial detainees at the Santa Clara County Jail filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of Northern California. The plaintiffs sued Santa Clara County under § 1983, the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) ... read more >
On November 18, 2015, pretrial detainees at the Santa Clara County Jail filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of Northern California. The plaintiffs sued Santa Clara County under § 1983, the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Represented by the Prison Law Office and several private attorneys, they asked the court for a declaration that Santa Clara County violated their constitutional rights and to enjoin Santa Clara County from holding people in the inhumane conditions of solitary confinement for prolonged periods, to provide individuals with meaningful notice and opportunities to challenge decisions to place them in solitary confinement, to provide constitutionally adequate healthcare, and to cease the unnecessary and excessive use of force. The plaintiffs claimed that they had been imprisoned in solitary confinement from November 2014 to November 2015 without knowing why they had been placed there or given the opportunities to appeal the decision, and that while in there had been denied adequate medical care. The plaintiffs are also seeking class action status.

The plaintiffs filed an amended complaint on January 20, 2016. As of January 30, 2016, the case is ongoing.

Kat Brausch - 01/30/2016


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Defendant-type
Corrections
Jurisdiction-wide
General
Administrative segregation
Conditions of confinement
Disciplinary segregation
Solitary confinement/Supermax (conditions or process)
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) County of Santa Clara
Plaintiff Description Pretrial detainees at Santa Clara County Jail alleging inhumane treatment by prolonged solitary confinement.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Prison Law Office
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 After Decision: Implementation of Judicial Decrees in Correctional Settings
Written: Oct. 01, 1977
By: M. Kay Harris & Dudley P. Spiller (Temple University)
Citation: (1977)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ]

Docket(s)
1:15-cv-05277-NJV (N.D. Cal.) 01/20/2016
JC-CA-0123-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief 11/18/2015
JC-CA-0123-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
First Amended Class Action Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief 01/20/2016
JC-CA-0123-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Vadas, Nandor J. (N.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
JC-CA-0123-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Knapp, Kelly Jean (California)
JC-CA-0123-0001 | JC-CA-0123-0002 | JC-CA-0123-9000
Litton, Addison Mills (California)
JC-CA-0123-0002 | JC-CA-0123-9000
Santamaria, Jessica Valenzuela (California)
JC-CA-0123-0001 | JC-CA-0123-0002 | JC-CA-0123-9000
Specter, Donald H. (California)
JC-CA-0123-0001 | JC-CA-0123-0002 | JC-CA-0123-9000
Walker, Jeffrey W. (California)
JC-CA-0123-0001 | JC-CA-0123-0002
Wasley, Kendall Dawson (California)
JC-CA-0123-0001 | JC-CA-0123-0002
Defendant's Lawyers None on record
Other Lawyers None on record

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