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Case Name U.S. v. District of Columbia PC-DC-0010
Docket / Court 1:88-cv-02897-TFH ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Case Summary
On October 4, 1988, the District of Columbia announced that, due to overcrowding of its penal facilities, it would no longer accept newly sentenced prisoners into the District of Columbia Department of Corrections. On October 5, 1988, the United States filed a lawsuit under D.C.Code § 24-425 ... read more >
On October 4, 1988, the District of Columbia announced that, due to overcrowding of its penal facilities, it would no longer accept newly sentenced prisoners into the District of Columbia Department of Corrections. On October 5, 1988, the United States filed a lawsuit under D.C.Code § 24-425 against the District of Columbia in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The US asked the district court for a temporary restraining order and for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that the District of Columbia could not refuse to accept federal prisoners.

On October 7, 1988, the district court (Judge Thomas F. Hogan) declined to issue a temporary restraining order but issued a preliminary injunction. On November 10, 1988, the district court (Judge Hogan) held that the District was required to accept all newly sentenced adult male prisoners unless acceptance would exceed a specific facility's population capacity as set by court order and that the District was required to immediately undertake all feasible measures to provide space for all adult male prisoners sentenced by the superior court. U.S. v. District of Columbia, 703 F.Supp. 982 (Dist.D.C. 1988). The District appealed.

On March 2, 1990, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg) partially affirmed the district court's decision, holding that the District could refuse to accept new prisoners only if accepting those prisoners would violate the Constitution or judicial orders setting prison population limits, but that the district court's requirement that the District must demonstrate that it had undertaken all feasible measures to provide space for adult male prisoners before receiving judicial authorization to refuse admission of additional inmates exceeded the scope of appropriate remedy. U.S. v. District of Columbia, 897 F.2d 1152 (D.C. Cir. 1990). Defendants appealed on April 6, 1990, and the Court of Appeals affirmed on May 29, 1990.

Kristen Sagar - 09/27/2006


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Male
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
General
Classification / placement
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Defendant(s) District of Columbia
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 Mixed
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1988 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Unknown
Case Listing PC-DC-0007 : John Doe v. District of Columbia (D.D.C.)
PC-DC-0008 : Twelve John Does v. District of Columbia (D.D.C.)
JC-DC-0001 : Campbell v. McGruder (D.D.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)
1:88-CV-02897-TFH (D.D.C.) 06/24/1991
PC-DC-0010-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Reported Opinion 11/10/1988 (703 F.Supp. 982) (D.D.C.)
PC-DC-0010-0003 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Implementation Order 12/16/1988 (D.D.C.)
PC-DC-0010-0001 PDF | Detail
Opinion 12/20/1988 (1988 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 16530) (D.D.C.)
PC-DC-0010-0004 PDF | LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: LexisNexis
Reported Opinion 03/02/1990 (897 F.2d 1152)
PC-DC-0010-0002 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judges Ginsburg, Ruth Bader (D.C. Circuit, SCOTUS)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Hogan, Thomas Francis (FISC, D.D.C.)
PC-DC-0010-0001 | PC-DC-0010-0003 | PC-DC-0010-9000
Wald, Patricia McGowan (D.C. Circuit)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Williams, Stephen Fain (D.C. Circuit)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bates, John D. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002 | PC-DC-0010-0003 | PC-DC-0010-9000
Cleary, John C. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Facciola, John M. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002 | PC-DC-0010-9000
Kelly, Bradley Lynn (Maryland)
PC-DC-0010-9000
Lawrence, R. Craig (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Stephens, Jay B. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002 | PC-DC-0010-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Quander, Paul A. Jr. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0003 | PC-DC-0010-9000
Reid, Herbert O. Sr. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Reischel, Charles L. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Schwab, Edward E. (District of Columbia)
PC-DC-0010-0002
Other Lawyers None on record

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