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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name U.S. v. Tupelo City JC-MS-0017
Docket / Court 94CV312 ( N.D. Miss. )
State/Territory Mississippi
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
This was a case brought by the Justice Department against Tupelo City, Mississippi regarding the conditions at the Tupelo City Jail. Defendants included the City of Tupelo, the Mayor of Tupelo, the Chief of Police of Tupelo, and members of the Tupelo City Counsel, represented by Guy Mitchell III, ... read more >
This was a case brought by the Justice Department against Tupelo City, Mississippi regarding the conditions at the Tupelo City Jail. Defendants included the City of Tupelo, the Mayor of Tupelo, the Chief of Police of Tupelo, and members of the Tupelo City Counsel, represented by Guy Mitchell III, the Tupelo City Attorney.

The case was brought pursuant to the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act. An investigation was opened in May of 1993 focusing on allegations concerning security and safety, conditions of confinement, structural deficiencies, staffing, medical services, and fire safety. The Justice Department issued a findings letter on November 17, 1993 based on its investigation. The main problems noted were: inadequate security, supervision, medical and mental health services; environmental health and safety deficiencies; and lack of opportunity for inmates to exercise or gain access to legal materials.

Based on correspondence, it appears that a complaint was filed concurrently with a consent decree on November 14, 1994. The docket begins with the filing of the complaint on this date. The District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi, (Judge Glen H. Davidson) approved the consent decree several months later, on March 7, 1995. The consent decree provided for the construction of a new jail, drafting of a staff manual delineating general policies and procedures, renovations, increased staffing and training, improvements in medical care and mental health services, and increased access to outdoor exercise, legal materials, and visitation. The consent decree specified that quarterly compliance reports be submitted to the United States and the Court.

According to the docket, eight compliance reports were filed between May 1995 and September 1999, and on September 18, 2003, the United States moved to dismiss the case. On December 30, 2003, the court granted the Motion to Dismiss, dismissed the consent order, vacated the injunction, and terminated jurisdiction over the case.

Theresa Spaulding - 06/04/2005


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Discrimination-basis
Race discrimination
General
Classification / placement
Counseling
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Fire safety
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Law library access
Mail
Phone
Recreation / Exercise
Sanitation / living conditions
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Suicide prevention
Totality of conditions
Visiting
Plaintiff Type
U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act (CRIPA), 42 U.S.C. ยง 1997 et seq.
Defendant(s) Tupelo City Jail
Plaintiff Description United States Department of Justice
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1994 - 2003
Case Closing Year 2003
Case Ongoing No
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 ]

  An Analysis of CRIPA Findings Letters Issued to Jails for Constitutional Violations by the Department of Justice
Written: Apr. 15, 2016
By: Jeff Mellow, Bryce E. Peterson & Mijin Kim (John Jay College of Criminal Justice)
Citation: Am. J. Crim. Just. (April 2016)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
94-312 (N.D. Miss.) 12/30/2003
JC-MS-0017-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Notice Letter re: CRIPA Investigation of the Tupelo City Jail in Tupelo, Mississippi 05/03/1993
JC-MS-0017-0001 PDF | Detail
Findings Letter re: CRIPA Investigation of the Tupelo City Jail in Tupelo, Mississippi 11/17/1993
JC-MS-0017-0002 PDF | Detail
Re: U.S. v. City of Tupelo, MS 11/08/1994
JC-MS-0017-0006 PDF | Detail
Complaint 11/14/1994
JC-MS-0017-0003 PDF | Detail
Consent Order 11/22/1994 (N.D. Miss.)
JC-MS-0017-0005 PDF | Detail
Judges Davidson, Glen H. (N.D. Miss.)
JC-MS-0017-0005 | JC-MS-0017-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Goldschmidt, Iris (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0003 | JC-MS-0017-0005 | JC-MS-0017-0006
Moreton, Alfred E. III (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0003 | JC-MS-0017-0005 | JC-MS-0017-9000
Patrick, Deval L. (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0003 | JC-MS-0017-0005
Peabody, Arthur E. Jr. (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0003
Reno, Janet (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0003
Turner, James P. (District of Columbia)
JC-MS-0017-0001 | JC-MS-0017-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Mitchell, Guy III (Mississippi)
JC-MS-0017-0005 | JC-MS-0017-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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