University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Inmates of Milwaukee County Jail v. Petersen JC-WI-0001
Docket / Court 70-C-545 ( E.D. Wis. )
State/Territory Wisconsin
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Case Summary
Pretrial detainees of the Milwaukee County Jail filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, alleging that the conditions at the jail violated their constitutional rights under 42 U.S.C. §1983. Specifically, they complained about inadequacies in relation to ... read more >
Pretrial detainees of the Milwaukee County Jail filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, alleging that the conditions at the jail violated their constitutional rights under 42 U.S.C. §1983. Specifically, they complained about inadequacies in relation to medical care, recreational facilities, sanitation, and access to counsel. The prisoners were represented by the Corrections Legal Services Program, Freedom Through Equality, Inc., the Wisconsin Civil Liberties Union, and the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc.

On January 12, 1971, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin (Judge Myron L. Gordon) issued the first opinion in the case, holding that the action could not be maintained as a class action since there was too much turnover in the inmate population. Inmates of Milwaukee County Jail v. Peterson, 51 F.R.D. 540 (E.D.Wis.1971).

On January 17, 1973, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin (Judge Gordon) issued a second opinion in the case, holding that the policies and procedures at the jail were unconstitutional. Inmates of Milwaukee County Jail v. Peterson, 353 F.Supp. 1157 (E.D.Wis. 1973). He stated that injunctive relief would have been granted had this been a class action lawsuit, but since that status was denied and the prisoners who initiated the lawsuit were no longer at the jail, no relief was granted.

Kristen Sagar - 06/14/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Loss or damage to property
Mail
Phone
Recreation / Exercise
Sanitation / living conditions
Search policies
Visiting
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Milwaukee County Jail
Plaintiff Description Inmates of Milwaukee County Jail alleging inadequacies in relation to medical care, recreational facilities, sanitation, and access to counsel violated constitutional rights
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Case Closing Year 1973
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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  Bravo v. Board of Commissioners of Dona Ana County
http://www.bazelon.org/
Date: 2017
By: The Bazelon Center (The Bazelon Center)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Decision and Order (51 F.R.D. 540) (E.D. Wis.)
JC-WI-0001-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/12/1971
Source: Google Scholar
Reported opinion (353 F.Supp. 1157) (E.D. Wis.)
JC-WI-0001-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/17/1973
Source: Google Scholar
Judges Gordon, Myron L. Court not on record
JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0002
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bass, Stanley A. (New York)
JC-WI-0001-0001
Kelly, Walter F. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0002
Martin, Kent A. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0001
Steinglass, Steven H. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0002
Sutton, Robert E. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Bonifas, James J. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0002 | JC-WI-0001-0002
Russell, Robert P. (Wisconsin)
JC-WI-0001-0001 | JC-WI-0001-0002
Thompson, Thomas A. (Wyoming)
JC-WI-0001-0002

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