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Case Name Green v. Peters PC-IL-0005
Docket / Court 71-1403 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Case Summary
In 1971, an Illinois inmate filed suit in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against state prison officials. Plaintiff sued under section 1983 for violations of his First Amendment right to access various published materials. Following a denial of cross-motions for summary ... read more >
In 1971, an Illinois inmate filed suit in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against state prison officials. Plaintiff sued under section 1983 for violations of his First Amendment right to access various published materials. Following a denial of cross-motions for summary judgment, the parties adopted a consent decree. This agreement prohibited the defendants from restricting the inmates' access to certain non-legal publications. At a hearing in 1975, Judge Frank McGarr found the defendants to be in contempt of court for violating the 1973 decree. Judge McGarr issued a permanent injunction in 1976 ordering an even broader range of reading materials be accessible to the inmates. 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11671 (N.D. Ill. June 27, 2002).

In 1987, prison officials adopted a new ""no catalogs rule,"" limiting the materials to which inmates had access. With the original plaintiff having died in the time between the 1976 decree and the new rule, another inmate stepped in as an intervening plaintiff. In 1992, the new intervenor-plaintiff sought and Judge Charles Kocoras granted an order declaring that the ""no catalogs rule"" violated the 1976 injunction. This gave the defendants 30 days to come into compliance with the injunction, 1992 WL 309566 (N.D. Ill. Oct. 22, 1992). In 1993, the intervenor-plaintiff continually sought to force the defendants into compliance. In April 1993, the court entered an implementation order with recommended language for the rules governing inmate reading material. When inmates continued to complain, the court issued a minute order in June 1993 personally ordering each warden to abide by the 1976 injunction. 1997 WL 769458 (N.D. Ill. Dec. 5, 1997).

In May 1997, defendants moved to terminate the orders in this case pursuant to the Prison Litigation Reform Act, 18 U.S.C. section 3626(b)(2). This law requires that relief be narrowly drawn and the least intrusive means of solving the problem. Intervenor-plaintiff argued in turn that section 3626 was unconstitutional. In December 1997, the court found section 3626 to be constitutional and that the orders and decrees did not comply with its requirements. 2000 WL 1230246 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 24, 2000). In November 2001, the court held that intervenor-plaintiff's evidence of ongoing violations of rights was insufficient to save the orders under the PLRA and terminated them. Intervenor-plaintiff sought and was denied attorney's fees for his efforts regarding the whole section 3626 issue. 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11671 (N.D. Ill. June 27, 2002). The docket ends there.

John Maksymonko - 08/03/2005


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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) Illinois DOC
Plaintiff Description Inmate at an Illinois correctional institution alleging that he had been denied access to various publications in violation of his First Amendment rights
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1973 - 2001
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)
71-1403 (N.D. Ill.) 06/27/2002
PC-IL-0005-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Memorandum Opinion 06/03/1992 (1992 WL 132513 / 1992 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 7745) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion 07/23/1992 (1992 WL 175511 / 1992 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 11038) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion 10/22/1992 (1992 WL 309566 / 1992 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 16125) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0006.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion and Order 12/05/1997 (1997 WL 769458 / 1997 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 19646) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion and Order 04/27/1998 (1998 WL 246487 / 1998 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 7106) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion 08/24/2000 (2000 WL 1230246 / 2000 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 12500) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Memorandum Opinion 06/28/2002 (2002 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 11671) (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0007.pdf | LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: LexisNexis
Judges Kocoras, Charles Petros (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0005-0001 | PC-IL-0005-0002 | PC-IL-0005-0003 | PC-IL-0005-0004 | PC-IL-0005-0005 | PC-IL-0005-0006 | PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Allison, Robert D. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
DeWolfe, Ruthanne (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
Saltzman, Steven I. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Ciecko, Thomas Lee (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-9000
Marsalek, Diann Karen (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
Siegel, Richard John (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-9000
Other Lawyers Garvey, Vincent M. (District of Columbia)
PC-IL-0005-0007 | PC-IL-0005-9000
Walsh, Thomas P. (Illinois)
PC-IL-0005-9000

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