University of Michigan Law School
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Case Name Jones v. Gov't of D.C. CJ-DC-0004
Docket / Court 1:16-cv-02405-CKK ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Criminal Justice (Other)
Indigent Defense
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Case Summary
On December 7, 2016, an individual formerly detained in a D.C. jail filed this putative class-action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The plaintiff sued the District of Columbia under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Represented by private counsel, the plaintiff sought injunctive ... read more >
On December 7, 2016, an individual formerly detained in a D.C. jail filed this putative class-action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The plaintiff sued the District of Columbia under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Represented by private counsel, the plaintiff sought injunctive relief, damages, and attorneys’ fees. The plaintiff claimed the district had violated his Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights.

The complaint labeled the plaintiff as both the "Overdetained Named Plaintiff" and the "Strip Search Named Plaintiff." As the "Overdetained Named Plaintiff," he sought to represent a class consisting of "(a) Each person who has been, is, or in the future will be incarcerated in any District of Columbia Department of Corrections facility from August 1, 2013 forward; and (b) who was not released, or, in the future, will not be released by midnight on the date on which the person is entitled to be released by court order or the date on which the basis for his or her detention has otherwise expired (or within two hours of being ordered released or otherwise becoming entitled to release if the person was a court return)."

As the "Strip Search Named Plaintiff," he sought to represent a class consisting of "each member of the class who was, or in the future will be, from August 1, 2013, forward: (i) in the custody of the Department of Corrections; (ii) taken to court from a Department of Corrections facility; (iii) ordered released by the court or otherwise became entitled to release by virtue of the court appearance because the charge on which he had been held was no longer pending or was dismissed at the hearing, was ordered released on his own recognizance, or had posted bail, was sentenced to time served, was acquitted or was otherwise entitled to release; (iv) was not the subject of any other pending case or cases which imposed any condition of release other than personal recognizance; (v) was not the subject of any detainer or warrant; (vi) was returned from court to the DC Jail or CTF or other District facility, to be processed out of Department of Corrections custody; and (vii) was subjected to a strip search and/or visual body cavity search without any individualized finding of reasonable suspicion or probable cause that he was concealing contraband or weapons; before being released, regardless of whether he was overdetained."

On March 21, 2017, the District of Columbia moved to dismiss the case, alleging the plaintiff had failed to state a claim on which relief could be granted.

On April 5, 2017, the plaintiff submitted an amended complaint. This complaint claimed that the harm experienced by the plaintiff was part of the District's revived pattern and practice.These claims were brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

On April 19, 2017, the defendant again moved to dismiss. The motion alleged the same arguments as the previous motion to dismiss.

As of July 25, 2018, the court has yet to issue an order on the defendant's motions to dismiss. The case is ongoing and assigned to Judge Dabney L. Friedrich.

Nili Blanck - 01/14/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Male
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Unreasonable search and seizure
Defendant-type
Corrections
Jurisdiction-wide
Law-enforcement
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Conditions of confinement
Discharge & termination plans
Disciplinary procedures
Excessive force
Over/Unlawful Detention
Pattern or Practice
Placement in detention facilities
Quality of representation
Record-keeping
Search policies
Strip search policy
Timeliness of case assignment
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Government of the District of Columbia
Plaintiff Description One male name plaintiff who brought pending class action over the systematic overdetention and illegal stripsearches of prisoners by the DC department of corrections. The two defined classes are Strip Search Class and Overdetention Class.
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filing Year 2016
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  Jail Strip-Search Cases: Patterns and Participants
http://law.duke.edu/journals/lcp
Date: Spring 2008
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University in St. Louis Faculty)
Citation: 71 Law & Contemp. Problems 65 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:16-cv-02405-CKK (D.D.C.)
CJ-DC-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/05/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint for Individual Money Damages and Class Injunctive Relief and Jury Demand [ECF# 1]
CJ-DC-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/07/2016
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action First Amended Complaint and Jury Demand [ECF# 12]
CJ-DC-0004-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/05/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Friedrich, Dabney Langhorne (D.D.C.)
CJ-DC-0004-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Claiborne, William Charles III (District of Columbia)
CJ-DC-0004-0001 | CJ-DC-0004-0007 | CJ-DC-0004-9000
Cunningham, Lynn E. (Wyoming)
CJ-DC-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Dansby, Joshua Wade (District of Columbia)
CJ-DC-0004-9000
Johnson, Ty Micha (District of Columbia)
CJ-DC-0004-9000
Montee, Amanda (District of Columbia)
CJ-DC-0004-9000

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