On February 13, 2008, an inmate at the Monroe County Jail filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Monroe County. The plaintiff, represented by the ACLU of Indiana, sought declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging ...
read more >
On February 13, 2008, an inmate at the Monroe County Jail filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Monroe County. The plaintiff, represented by the ACLU of Indiana, sought declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging violations of Indiana state law and the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments. Specifically, the plaintiff claimed that overcrowding had led to unsanitary and dangerous living conditions in the jail.
On August 4, 2008, the District Court (Judge Richard Young) denied defendants' motion to dismiss and granted plaintiff's motion to certify the case as a class action. The Court (Judge Young) found that although plaintiff's individual claims for relief were moot, he had standing to represent the class.
On August 14, 2009, the parties entered a stipulation to enter into a private settlement agreement under the Prison Litigation Reform Act. Under the terms of the settlement, the defendants agreed to make reasonable efforts to continue to meet with the judges of the Monroe Circuit Court to discuss ways of keeping the jail population under its capacity. The defendants also agreed that if the population exceeded the number of available beds for a specified period of time, the jail would take reasonable steps, including informing the board of commissioners and transferring prisoners, to reduce the population. Additionally, the defendants agreed not to accept prisoners from other counties on a per diem basis and to only accept Monroe County prisoners that it is legally required to accept. Under the settlement, prisoners will also be afforded at least two hours each week of vigorous physical exercise and are guaranteed reasonable sleeping arrangements. The parties also agreed to reporting requirements. Finally, defendants agreed to pay the plaintiff's attorneys fees and costs. The parties agreed that absent a court order or written agreement, the settlement would remain in effect until October 1, 2011.
On September 30, 2011, the District Court (Judge Young) granted the plaintiff's motion to modify the parties' requirement to move to dismiss the case and agreement to extend the private settlement agreement. On October 1, 2012, the District Court (Judge Young) granted a similar motion to modify filed by the defendants. Most recently, on September 18, 2014, the court (Judge Young) granted the parties' agreement to extend the private settlement to October 1, 2016.Priyah Kaul - 09/22/2014