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Case Name Mays v. County of Sacramento JC-CA-0134
Docket / Court 2:18-cv-02081 ( E.D. Cal. )
Additional Docket(s) 2:18-at-01259  [ 18-1259 ]  Eastern District of CA (U.S.)
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Jail Conditions
Attorney Organization NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Prison Law Office
Case Summary
On July 31, 2018, prisoners in the County of Sacramento jail system, with the assistance of counsel from Disability Rights California, Prison Law Office, and Cooley LLP, filed this suit against the County of Sacramento. The plaintiffs alleged a series of problems with the County of Sacramento Jail ... read more >
On July 31, 2018, prisoners in the County of Sacramento jail system, with the assistance of counsel from Disability Rights California, Prison Law Office, and Cooley LLP, filed this suit against the County of Sacramento. The plaintiffs alleged a series of problems with the County of Sacramento Jail system, including understaffing, prolonged and harmful isolation, lack of minimally adequate mental health care, lack of minimally adequate medical care, and discrimination on the basis of disability. The plaintiffs claimed that these violate the Eighth Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishment, cruel and unusual conditions under the Fourteenth Amendment, procedural due process under the Fourteenth Amendment, the Americans' with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act, and California state law. The plaintiffs sought injunctive relief, declaratory relief, and attorneys' fees.

The case was randomly assigned to Magistrate Judge Kendall J. Newman, however, the plaintiffs declined to consent to a Magistrate Judge and requested a random assignment to a United States District Judge. The case was then assigned to both District Judge Troy L. Nunley and Magistrate Judge Newman on September 4, 2018.

In their complaint, the plaintiffs alleged that the lack of staffing led to problems with cleanliness, transportation, and security. The plaintiffs claimed that the County of Sacramento was aware of these problems because they had been notified by both internal and external reports. The plaintiffs also alleged that people were kept in cells for at least 23 1/2 hours per day in solitary confinement (called "total separation" or "T-Sep). Additionally, the plaintiffs claimed that prisoners were placed in solitary confinement for no reason—even those with intellectual disabilities or suicidal prisoners were regularly placed in solitary confinement. The County of Sacramento jails did not meet minimally adequate mental health care standards according to the plaintiffs, as evidenced by the inadequate screening at intake, failure to create treatment plans, and lack of staff. The plaintiffs also noted that the rate of suicide deaths at defendant's jails was twice the national average.

The plaintiffs additionally took issue with medical screenings, which were conducted in crowded intake areas that compromised the plaintiffs' privacy. Moreover, patients would not be seen for multiple issues at once and prisoners who are unable to fill out medical requests on their own were left without care. Finally, the plaintiffs claimed that prisoners with disabilities were discriminated against on the basis of their disabilities. The plaintiffs alleged that defendant's jails failed to identify or track persons with disabilities and provide people with necessary walking aids. The main jail housing was not ADA accessible, which placed inmates with disabilities in separate housing simply because of their disability. They further claimed that this denied them access to the same programming.

On October 18, 2018, the parties jointly moved for class certification. On December 28, 2018, the court certified the class of "all people who are now, or in the future will be, incarcerated in Sacramento County jails." The court also certified a subclass of "all qualified individuals with disabilities [...] who are, or will be in the future, incarcerated in the Sacramento County jails."

On June 10, 2019, the parties submitted a joint notice of settlement in the form of a proposed Consent Decree, which involved a Remedial Plan requiring the County to expand its mental health programs and services, provide constitutionally-adequate medical care, provide additional safeguards to reduce suicides by people in custody, identify people with disabilities and ensure that they receive appropriate accommodations, and expand mental health input into the jail's disciplinary and use of force practices. Under the proposed Consent Decree, the Court retained jurisdiction to enforce the Consent Decree and the agreement would last for six years from the date it is entered by the court.

On August 13, 2019, Judge Nunley issued an order preliminarily approving the Consent Decree and finding the Consent Decree met the requirements of 18 U.S.C. 3262(a)(1), the Prison Litigation Reform Act. Judge Nunley also laid out a schedule for posting the Notice of Class Action Settlement and set a fairness hearing for December 5, 2019.

On September 4, 2019, Judge Nunley released an order regarding the revised Notice of Class Action settlement, which was revised to note that plaintiffs asked for $2.1 million in attorney's fees and an annual cap of $250,000 per year to monitor compliance with the Consent Decree.

As of October 28, 2019, the case was ongoing.

Cianan Lesley - 02/07/2019
Caitlin Kierum - 10/27/2019


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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
Mobility impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Conditions of confinement
Confinement/isolation
Counseling
Failure to train
Reasonable Accommodations
Sanitation / living conditions
Solitary confinement/Supermax (conditions or process)
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Suicide prevention
Totality of conditions
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Mental health care, general
Self-injurious behaviors
Skin Infections
Suicide prevention
Mental Disability
Depression
Mental Illness, Unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Private 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
State law
Defendant(s) County of Sacramento
Plaintiff Description All people who are now, or in the future will be, incarcerated in Sacramento County jails." And "all qualified individuals with disabilities [...] who are, or will be in the future, incarcerated in the Sacramento County jails."
Indexed Lawyer Organizations NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Prison Law Office
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filing Year 2018
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  Mays v. County of Sacramento
disabilityrightsca.org
Date: 07/31/2018
By: Disability Rights California
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
2:18-cv-2081 (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0134-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/21/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
JC-CA-0134-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/31/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 49] (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0134-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/28/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action [Proposed] Consent Decree [ECF# 85-1] (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0134-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/20/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action Order Granting Approval for Preliminary Approval of Consent Decree and Class Action [ECF# 88] (2019 WL 3804192) (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0134-0004.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 08/13/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice: Class Action Settlement [ECF# 89-2]
JC-CA-0134-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/03/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation for Revised Class Notice and Order [ECF# 90] (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0134-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/04/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Newman, Kendall J (E.D. Cal.) [Magistrate] show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0003 | JC-CA-0134-0006 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Nunley, Troy Lynne (E.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0002 | JC-CA-0134-0004 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Fischer, Aaron Joseph (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0001 | JC-CA-0134-0003 | JC-CA-0134-0006 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Hadreas, Anne (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Hart, Sophie Jedeikin (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Litton, Addison Mills (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Mendelson, Margot Knight (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0001 | JC-CA-0134-0003 | JC-CA-0134-0006 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Querubin, Kathlyn Anne (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Ressl−Moyer, Tifanei (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Santamaria, Jessica Valenzuela (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0003 | JC-CA-0134-0006 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Specter, Donald H. (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Zambarda, Mark Anthony (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Master, Todd Holton (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0006 | JC-CA-0134-9000
Ridley, Shawn M (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0134-0003 | JC-CA-0134-9000

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