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Case Name Plyler v. Evatt PC-SC-0005
Docket / Court 23928 ( State Court )
State/Territory South Carolina
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Case Summary
This case was a class action seeking a declaratory relief with regard to the interpretation of a South Carolina state law pertaining to inmate eligibility for participation in the Supervised Furlough Release Program (Program). The action was initially filed in the Richland County Court of Common ... read more >
This case was a class action seeking a declaratory relief with regard to the interpretation of a South Carolina state law pertaining to inmate eligibility for participation in the Supervised Furlough Release Program (Program). The action was initially filed in the Richland County Court of Common Pleas, South Carolina on behalf of the plaintiff class in federal lawsuit Plyler v. Evatt, No. 82-876-2 (PC-SC-0004). The Court (Judge Luke N. Brown) ruled that S.C. Code Ann § 24-13-710 and § 24-13-720 (1989) created two separate classification schemes to determine inmate eligibility for participation in the Program. Plyler v. Evatt, 409 S.E.2d 416 (S.C. 1991). The Department of Corrections appealed.

On appeal, the South Carolina Supreme Court affirmed the decision as modified. The Supreme Court held that S.C. Code Ann § 24-13-710 and § 24-13-720 (1989) did create two separate classification schemes. However, § 24-13-710 also allowed the DOC to create additional eligibility criteria, including requiring that the inmate be within six months of expiration of his sentence to participate in the Program. Plyler v. Evatt, 438 S.E.2d 244 (S.C. 1993).

Subsequent to that opinion, the law creating the Program was amended in 1993. Following the 1993 amendment, another declaratory judgment action was filed in the Circuit Court of Richland County, South Carolina. The Circuit Judge (Carol Connor) ruled that S.C. Code Ann § 24-13-720 (1989) as amended, which created the Program, entitled all prisoners within six months of expiration of their sentences, except those serving life terms, to participate in the Program. The Department of Corrections appealed.

The South Carolina Supreme Court affirmed. The Supreme Court held that S.C. Code Ann § 24-13-720 (1989) was amended in 1993 such that it created a new law, as opposed to a clarification of the old law. As such, inmates that met the statutory requirements for participation in the program prior to the 1993 change were entitled to participation in the Program. Plyler v. Evatt, 438 S.E.2d 244 (S.C. 1993).

We have no further information on this case.

Dan Dalton - 02/28/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Defendant(s) South Carolina Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Case was brought on on behalf of the plaintiff class in Plyler v. Evatt, No. 82-876-2 (PC-SC-0004)
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 not on record
Case Closing Year 1993
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing PC-SC-0004 : Plyler v. Evatt (D.S.C.)
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 ]

  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)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Order 09/24/1991 (409 S.E.2d 416)
PC-SC-0005-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 08/26/1993 (1993 WL 335152)
PC-SC-0005-0003.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Opinion 11/08/1993 (438 S.E.2d 244)
PC-SC-0005-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Finney, Ernest A. Jr. (State Supreme Court)
PC-SC-0005-0002
Gregory, George Tillman Jr. (State Supreme Court)
PC-SC-0005-0001
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Fairey, W. Gaston (South Carolina)
PC-SC-0005-0001 | PC-SC-0005-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Batson, Larry (South Carolina)
PC-SC-0005-0001 | PC-SC-0005-0002
Lundberg, Carl N. (South Carolina)
PC-SC-0005-0001 | PC-SC-0005-0002
Medlock, T. Travis (South Carolina)
PC-SC-0005-0001 | PC-SC-0005-0002
Woodington, Kenneth P. (South Carolina)
PC-SC-0005-0001 | PC-SC-0005-0002
Other Lawyers None on record

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