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Case Name Barrera v. Wolf IM-TX-0053
Docket / Court 4:20-cv-01241 ( S.D. Tex. )
State/Territory Texas
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Special Collection COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National Prison Project
Case Summary
COVID-19 Summary: This is a habeas action filed by four immigrants held at the Montgomery Processing Center, seeking release in light of COVID-19. The plaintiffs alleged that they were particularly vulnerable to the virus due to their medical conditions. No outcome yet.

On April 8, 2020, ... read more >
COVID-19 Summary: This is a habeas action filed by four immigrants held at the Montgomery Processing Center, seeking release in light of COVID-19. The plaintiffs alleged that they were particularly vulnerable to the virus due to their medical conditions. No outcome yet.

On April 8, 2020, a group of four immigrants in detention filed this lawsuit against U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement ("ICE"), ICE officials, and the warden of the Montgomery Processing Center. Represented by the ACLU and private counsel, the petitioners sought writs of habeas corpus under 28 U.S.C. § 2241. Alternatively, they sought declaratory and injunctive relief. Specifically, the petitioners argued that by detaining them, the defendants were subjecting them to an unreasonable risk of contracting COVID-19 in violation of the Fifth Amendment.

The case was assigned to Judge Keith P. Ellison.

On April 10, the plaintiffs filed a motion for temporary restraining order.

On April 17, Judge Ellison entered an order granting in part and denying in part the plaintiffs' motion for a temporary restraining order. The government was required to release one plaintiff from detention because the plaintiff did not have a history of violence, so the danger to the plaintiff in detention outweighed the public interest in safety; the court issued this order as a preliminary injunction rather than a temporary restraining order. The court declined to order the release of another plaintiff due to his history of violence and violation of previous court protective orders. (The two other individual plaintiffs had already been released.)

The plaintiffs filed an amended complaint and a motion to certify the class on April 29.

The defendants filed a motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction on May 1.

The case is ongoing.

Caitlin Kierum - 05/09/2020


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Due Process: Substantive Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Bathing and hygiene
Conditions of confinement
Habeas Corpus
Sanitation / living conditions
Totality of conditions
Immigration/Border
Constitutional rights
Detention - conditions
Detention - criteria
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
Medical/Mental Health
COVID-19 Release Denied
COVID-19 Release Granted
COVID-19 Release Requested
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Special Case Type
Habeas
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Ex parte Young (federal or state officials)
Habeas Corpus, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2241-2253; 2254; 2255
Defendant(s) Immigration and Customs Enforcement
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description Four immigrants held at the Montgomery Processing Center
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National Prison Project
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Mixed
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Source of Relief Litigation
Filed 04/08/2020
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
  Vazquez Barrera et al v. Wolf et al
https://www.aclutx.org/
Date: Apr. 8, 2020
By: ACLU of Texas
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
4:20-cv-01241 (S.D. Tex.)
IM-TX-0053-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/07/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Verified Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2241 and Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
IM-TX-0053-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/08/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order [ECF# 41] (2020 WL 1904497) (S.D. Tex.)
IM-TX-0053-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 04/17/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Ellison, Keith P. (S.D. Tex.) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0002 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Buser-Clancy, Thomas Paul (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001
Cho, Eunice (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Choi, Erin (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Cruz, Bernardo Rafael (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Eidelman, Vera (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Fathi, David Cyrus (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Garza, Rochelle M (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Genender, Paul R (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Huddleston, Kathryn Lynn (Arizona) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Jadwat, Omar C. (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001
Kuhlik, Lauren (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Miller, Ron (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Saldivar, Edgar (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Segura, Andre (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Tan, Michael K. T. (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Zafar, Noor (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-0001 | IM-TX-0053-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Cravens, Annalisa L (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Hu, Daniel David (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Pineda, Christopher D. (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Other Lawyers Buergel, Susanna M. (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Johnson, Darren W. (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Kimball-Stanley, David C. (New York) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000
Turkevich, Paul Stevens (Texas) show/hide docs
IM-TX-0053-9000

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