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Case Name Miller v. Commissioner of Correction PC-MA-0017
Docket / Court 92-665 ( State Court )
State/Territory Massachusetts
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Case Summary
On April 9, 1984, a patient at the Massachusetts Treatment Center for Sexually Dangerous Persons filed a pro se lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the Massachusetts Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts (Judge Robert E. Keeton). The ... read more >
On April 9, 1984, a patient at the Massachusetts Treatment Center for Sexually Dangerous Persons filed a pro se lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the Massachusetts Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts (Judge Robert E. Keeton). The plaintiff alleged that the Department of Corrections had violated his civil rights by depriving him of his rights to reasonable telephone access, unopened privileged mail, and treatment for his mental problems due to changed classification, and he asked for declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as monetary damages.On December 6, 1990, the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts (Judge Keeton) held that the defendants could not abridge the patient's rights to privileged mail, telephone access, or treatment. The court granted declaratory and injunctive relief, but declined to award damages or attorneys' fees.

The plaintiff appealed the denial of attorneys' fees in the Superior Court of Massachusetts, and the court (Judge John D. Sheehan) ruled that no attorneys' fees were due the plaintiff. That decision was appealed to the Appeals Court of Massachusetts (Judge Dreben), and that court reversed, ruling that the plaintiff was entitled to attorneys' fees. Miller v. Commissioner of Correction, 629 N.E.2d 315 (Mass.App.Ct. 1994). The defendants appealed this decision to the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts (Judge Sherman), and that court declined to hear the appeal. Miller v. Commissioner of Correction, 635 N.E.2d 253 (Mass. 1994). We have no further information on the proceedings in this case.

Kristen Sagar - 03/13/2006


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
General
Mail
Phone
Rehabilitation
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Massachusetts Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Patient at treatment center for sexually dangerous persons
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 Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1990 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Unknown
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
Reported Opinion 04/26/1994 (629 N.E.2d 315)
PC-MA-0017-0001 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion 04/26/1994 (635 N.E.2d 253)
PC-MA-0017-0002 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Judges Dreben, Raya S. (State Appellate Court)
PC-MA-0017-0001
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers None on record
Defendant's Lawyers Geary, Nancy W. (Massachusetts)
PC-MA-0017-0001
Other Lawyers None on record

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