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Case Name Jarrett v. Roth PC-IL-0003
Docket / Court 01-50027 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Case Summary
On January 1, 2001, an individual inmate filed two separate Section 1983 suits against prison officials in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Plaintiff's first suit, 3:01-CV-50027 (the 027 case), challenged prison officials' policy of allowing only five stamped envelopes per ... read more >
On January 1, 2001, an individual inmate filed two separate Section 1983 suits against prison officials in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Plaintiff's first suit, 3:01-CV-50027 (the 027 case), challenged prison officials' policy of allowing only five stamped envelopes per month to certain "C" grade psychiatric unit prisoners. The second suit, 3:01-CV-50354 (the 354 case), sought to enjoin the officials from censoring inmate mail absent a hearing. On April 27, 2001 and October 1, 2001 respectively, the District Court (Judge Philip G. Reinhard) granted plaintiff's motions for appointment of counsel, appointing David H. Carter to represent the plaintiff in the 027 case, and Robert A. Calgaro to represent him in the 354 case.

On January 30, 2003, the parties reached settlement agreements in both cases.

Shortly thereafter, plaintiff filed a motion to vacate judgment in the 027 case, and subsequently in the 354 case as well. In the 027 case, plaintiff contended that the prison officials had agreed to change their mail policy on a prison-wide basis, but had implemented the change only with respect to the plaintiff. Defendants filed a motion to enforce the settlement agreements in both cases.

On May 13, 2003, the Magistrate (Judge P. Michael Mahoney) recommended that the District Court deny plaintiff's motions. Jarrett v. Roth, 2003 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8022. In the 027 case, the judge explained that the remedy was intended to apply only to the plaintiff. In the 354 case, the judge found plaintiff's motion to vacate untimely.

Plaintiff appealed the Magistrate's Report and Recommendation, and on May 27, 2003, the District Court (Judge Philip G. Reinhard) denied plaintiff's motions to vacate judgment and granted defendants' motion to enforce settlement. Jarrett v. Roth, 2003 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8767. On June 25, 2003, the plaintiff attempted to appeal to the Seventh Circuit from the minute order. The plaintiff was unsuccessful and his case was dismissed on September 5, 2003 for a failure to pay the required docketing fee. The docketing fee was required because the Court found the Plaintiff's appeal was taken in bad faith and denied his motion to proceed in forma pauperis on July 24, 2003.

The plaintiff wrote a letter to the Northern District of Illinois Court to enforce the settlement agreement filed by the court, alleging that he had never received the $200.00 that was the financial portion of the settlement agreement. The defendant's responded on May 12, 2005, finding that the Comptroller of the State of Illinois issued a check to Plaintiff in the required amount. This was verified by a printout of Plaintiff's trust fund account from Dixon Correctional Center and the vendor warrant page of Illinois Comptroller's web-site. The court held that, even if the court found that it had jurisdiction over the settlement agreement, there is no need for a hearing. The plaintiffs' request from April 19, 2005 for a hearing was denied.

Chris Sullivan - 07/28/2005
Christina Bonanni - 10/27/2013


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
General
Mail
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983
Defendant(s) Illinios Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Prison inmate alleging that prison's policy of allowing only five stamped envelopes per month to prisoners confined to "C" grade in the psychiatric unit was a violation of his civil rights
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 Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2003 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2005
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)
3:01-CV-50027 (N.D. Ill.) 05/16/2005
PC-IL-0003-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Report and Recommendation 05/13/2003 (2003 WL 21077432) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0003-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Memorandum Opinion and Order 05/26/2003 (2003 WL 21222682) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0003-0001.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Judges Mahoney, P. Michael (N.D. Ill.) [Magistrate]
PC-IL-0003-0002
Reinhard, Philip Godfrey (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0003-0001 | PC-IL-0003-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Carter, David H. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0003-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Acton, June C. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0003-9000
Doran, James Patrick (Illinois)
PC-IL-0003-0002
Lambertson, Andrew W. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0003-0002 | PC-IL-0003-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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