University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Berch v. Stahl JC-NC-0001
Docket / Court 72-53 ( W.D.N.C. )
State/Territory North Carolina
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
In 1972, inmates of the Mecklenburg County Jail in Charlotte, North Carolina sued the County, the Sheriff, and other jail officials in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, challenging conditions and practices in the jail as unconstitutional ... read more >
In 1972, inmates of the Mecklenburg County Jail in Charlotte, North Carolina sued the County, the Sheriff, and other jail officials in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, challenging conditions and practices in the jail as unconstitutional under the First, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. The inmates alleged they were put in solitary confinement and exposed to unsanitary conditions for weeks at a time without justification. Also, the inmates alleged failure of the Sheriff to deliver or allow them to receive mail. They sought damages and equitable relief. The United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina (Judge James Bryan McMillan) held that the solitary confinement violated the prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment when imposed for more than specified periods for certain types of solitary confinement. Berch v. Stahl, 373 F. Supp. 412 (W.D.N.C. 1974). The court also ordered that the inmates were not to be deprived of attorney visits, mail from courts and attorneys, telephone calls to attorneys, and writing materials. The decision was not appealed, and no docket is available on PACER.

Kristen Sagar - 06/06/2007


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
General
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Personal injury
Sanitation / living conditions
Totality of conditions
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) County Sheriff
Plaintiff Description inmates at the Mecklenburg County Jail in Charlotte, North Carolina
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1974 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
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)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Memorandum of Decision and Order 03/25/1974 (373 F.Supp. 412) (W.D.N.C.)
JC-NC-0001-0001 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges McMillan, James Bryan (W.D.N.C.)
JC-NC-0001-0001
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Daly, George (North Carolina)
JC-NC-0001-0001
Defendant's Lawyers Aycock, Frank B. III (North Carolina)
JC-NC-0001-0001
Cobb, James O. (North Carolina)
JC-NC-0001-0001
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -