University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Joslyn v. Armstrong PC-CT-0001
Docket / Court 01-198 ( D. Conn. )
State/Territory Connecticut
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Special Collection Solitary confinement
Case Summary
On February 7, 2001, prisoners at the Wallens Ridge State Prison in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Connecticut Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut. The plaintiffs were Connecticut citizens, convicted and ... read more >
On February 7, 2001, prisoners at the Wallens Ridge State Prison in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Connecticut Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut. The plaintiffs were Connecticut citizens, convicted and sentenced to the custody of the Connecticut Department of Corrections by Connecticut state courts. They were placed at Wallens Ridge State Prison (a supermax facility) pursuant to an Interstate Corrections Compact between the State of Connecticut and the Commonwealth of Virginia. The plaintiffs, represented by the National Prison Project and the Connecticut Civil Liberties Union, alleged that their constitutional rights had been violated by the defendant's use of excessive force against them, specifically through the use of five-point restraints and electric shock devices as summary punishment for trivial offenses.

On May 16, 2001, the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut (Judge Christopher Droney) denied the plaintiffs' motion to transfer the case to the Western District of Virginia. Joslyn v. Armstrong, 2001 WL 1464780 (D.Conn. May 16, 2001). On September 27, 2001, the court (Judge Droney) adopted the parties' settlement agreement, and closed the case. The settlement is not part of the record, so we don't know the terms.

Kristen Sagar - 03/31/2006


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Male
General
Assault/abuse by staff
Disciplinary procedures
Personal injury
Restraints : physical
Solitary confinement/Supermax (conditions or process)
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Connecticut Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description All Connecticut state prisoners who are now, or who will in the future be, confined at Wallens Ridge State Prison in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, or at Red Onion State Prison in Pound, Virginia
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 Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration 2001 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2001
Case Ongoing No
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)
01-198 (D. Conn.) 10/17/2001
PC-CT-0001-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief 02/07/2001
PC-CT-0001-0001 PDF | Detail
ACLU Sues CT Corrections Chief over Abuse of Prisoners Housed at Notorious Virginia "Supermax" 02/07/2001
PC-CT-0001-0002 PDF | External Link | Detail
Ruling on Motion to Transfer 05/16/2001 (2001 WL 1464780) (D. Conn.)
PC-CT-0001-0003 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Judges Droney, Christopher Fitzgerald (D. Conn., Second Circuit)
PC-CT-0001-0003 | PC-CT-0001-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Fathi, David Cyrus (District of Columbia)
PC-CT-0001-0001 | PC-CT-0001-0002 | PC-CT-0001-0003 | PC-CT-0001-9000
Graham, Toya Alek (Connecticut)
PC-CT-0001-0001 | PC-CT-0001-0002 | PC-CT-0001-0003 | PC-CT-0001-9000
Neigher, Alan (Connecticut)
PC-CT-0001-0001 | PC-CT-0001-0003 | PC-CT-0001-9000
Tegeler, Philip D. (Connecticut)
PC-CT-0001-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Strom, Steven R. (Connecticut)
PC-CT-0001-0003 | PC-CT-0001-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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