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Case Name Gay v. Illinois PC-IL-0045
Docket / Court 1:18-cv-07196 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Prison Conditions
Case Summary
This case addresses the Illinois Department of Correction’s (IDOC) treatment of a prisoner during his twenty year stay in solitary confinement. Initially, the prisoner had been sentenced to serve seven years in prison as a young adult. However, during his first years in prison, he accumulated ... read more >
This case addresses the Illinois Department of Correction’s (IDOC) treatment of a prisoner during his twenty year stay in solitary confinement. Initially, the prisoner had been sentenced to serve seven years in prison as a young adult. However, during his first years in prison, he accumulated infractions for violent behavior caused by an untreated personality disorder. As a result, the prison extended his sentence to almost two lifetimes in solitary confinement.

In response, on October 28th, 2018, he filed this lawsuit against the IDOC in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Represented by several private civil rights attorneys, the plaintiff brought claims under 42 U.S.C. §1983, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Rehabilitation Act. He alleged that the IDOC had violated his rights under the 8th and 14th Amendments to the United States Constitution. The plaintiff also claimed the defendant discriminated against him through its failure to provide treatment or reasonable accommodations in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act. The plaintiff sought attorney’s fees as well as compensatory and punitive damages.

Specifically, the complaint outlined the conditions he faced while in solitary confinement. The plaintiff alleged the IDOC did not provide him with any way to challenge his placement in solitary confinement. The plaintiff spent twenty years in a cell the size of half a parking space with no sensory stimulation or human contact. Throughout the twenty years, the prison recorded dozens of instances of the plaintiff engaging in serious self-mutilation and increasingly aggressive behavior. The plaintiff alleged he was never given the acute psychiatric care he needed for his declining mental health. The plaintiff was released from prison in August 2018 as the result of a habeas petition.

This case was assigned to Judge Sara Ellis and was ongoing as of February 2019.

Sarah Reasoner - 02/28/2019


compress summary

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Defendant-type
Corrections
Disability
disability, unspecified
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Conditions of confinement
Disciplinary segregation
Solitary confinement/Supermax (conditions or process)
Medical/Mental Health
Self-injurious behaviors
Plaintiff Type
State Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Defendant(s) Illinois Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description Plaintiff is a man who has been imprisoned in Illinois since he was a teenager. For the past 20 years, Plaintiff has been kept in a solitary confinement cell.
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
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 2018
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  Civil Rights Injunctions Over Time: A Case Study of Jail and Prison Court Orders
N.Y.U. Law Review
Date: May 2006
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University Faculty)
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
Book
Date: Jan. 1, 1998
By: Malcolm M. Feeley & Edward Rubin (UC Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law & Vanderbilt School of Law Faculty Faculty)
Citation: (1998)
[ Detail ]

Docket(s)
1:18-cv-7196 (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0045-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/25/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
PC-IL-0045-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/28/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Ellis, Sara Lee (N.D. Ill.) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Chardon, Alexis Garmey (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Filler, Maggie E (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Greenfield, Daniel M (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Romanucci, Antonio Maurizio (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Ward, Nicolette A. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Weil, Stephen Heschel (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-0001 | PC-IL-0045-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Atwood, Stetson F. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Ieremia, Laura Coffey (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Lombardo, Joseph Jack (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Rehani, Phillip Waleed (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Staley, Nicholas Scott (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000
Weller, Matthew H. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0045-9000

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