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Case Name Mast v. Indiana Department of Corrections PC-IN-0013
Docket / Court 2:05-cv-00037-JPH-DLP ( S.D. Ind. )
State/Territory Indiana
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Special Collection Solitary confinement
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National Prison Project
Case Summary
On February 3, 2005, inmates confined to the Secured Housing Unit ("SHU") at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility in Indiana filed a class-action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The plaintiffs, represented by the ACLU National ... read more >
On February 3, 2005, inmates confined to the Secured Housing Unit ("SHU") at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility in Indiana filed a class-action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The plaintiffs, represented by the ACLU National Prison Project and the ACLU of Indiana, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, claiming that the confinement of certain mentally ill prisoners there was unconstitutional.

On March 10, 2005, the District Court (Judge Larry J. McKinney) certified the case as a class action. The class was defined as all prisoners currently, and in the future, confined within the Secured Housing Unit at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility who were mentally ill.

Following two years of litigation and several court-ordered settlement conferences, the parties reached a tentative settlement of the case in the form of a private settlement agreement ("Mast Agreement"). The Mast Agreement provided that it was inappropriate for the Indiana Department of Corrections (IDOC) to place seriously mentally ill prisoners into the SHU or into any correctional setting that features isolation and solitary confinement and the IDOC agreed to abandon that practice. The Mast Agreement further called for the IDOC to provide appropriate mental health treatment for seriously mentally ill prisoners, in a setting and settings other than the SHU. Monitoring of IDOC's implementation of the agreement provision was set for a two-year period.

The parties submitted the agreement to Judge McKinney for approval. Class notices were sent and the matter was set for an approval hearing on March 30, 2007, before Judge McKinney. On November 26, 2007, Judge McKinney approved the settlement and ordered the case stayed for two years, thereafter to be dismissed without prejudice.

On October 7, 2008, a mentally ill prisoner filed pro se a motion to hold the defendants in contempt of court for violating the settlement agreement and award of punitive damages for continuing to confine him in the SHU and then moving him to a facility that was similar to the SHU.

On December 31, 2009, Judge McKinney closed and dismissed the case without prejudice pursuant to the terms in the Mast Agreement.

In 2019, the case was reopened. On March 18, 2019, the parties stipulated to terminating the Mast Agreement because of the related settlement agreement in Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services Commission, et al. v. Commissioner, Indiana
Department of Correction
("IPAS Agreement"). Specifically, the IPAS agreement prohibited the placement of seriously mentally ill persons in segregation or segregation-like settings for more than 30 days. The IDOC interpreted the class affected by the IPAS Agreement to be slightly narrower than the class in this case. The IPAS Agreement was scheduled to expire on March 25, 2019, but IDOC agreed to extend it if the Mast Agreement was terminated. Because of the IPAS Agreement's immediate,
concrete benefits to IDOC prisoners, the parties agreed to terminate the Mast Agreement and extend the IPAS Agreement. On March 19, 2019, the case was reassigned to Judge James Patrick Hanlon, who approved the parties' stipulated agreement and closed the case on July 23, 2019.

Kristen Sagar - 10/02/2008
Jessica Kincaid - 07/21/2014
Elena Malik - 03/13/2020


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Male
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Content of Injunction
Monitoring
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Classification / placement
Solitary confinement/Supermax (conditions or process)
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Indiana Department of Corrections
Secured Housing Unit at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility
Plaintiff Description All prisoners currently, and in the future, confined within the Secured Housing Unit at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility who were mentally ill.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
ACLU National Prison Project
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration 2007 - 2019
Filed 02/03/2005
Case Closing Year 2019
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing MH-IN-0002 : Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services (IPAS) Commission v. Commissioner, Indiana Department of Correction (S.D. Ind.)
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
Docket(s)
2:05-cv-00037-LJM-WGH (S.D. Ind.)
PC-IN-0013-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/08/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief
PC-IN-0013-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/03/2005
Private Settlement Agreement Between Defendants and Plaintiffs (S.D. Ind.)
PC-IN-0013-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/01/2007
Order Certifying Case as Class Action (S.D. Ind.)
PC-IN-0013-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/10/2007
ORDER FINDING PRIVATE SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT TO BE FAIR [ECF# 104]
PC-IN-0013-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/26/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Motion [For Order Holding Defendants In Contempt Of Court For Violating The Settlement Agreement And For Award Of Punitive Damages] [ECF# 123]
PC-IN-0013-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/07/2008
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Dismissing Case Without Prejudice [ECF# 133] (S.D. Ind.)
PC-IN-0013-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/31/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation to Terminate Private Settlement Agreement Following Notice to the Class and Approval by the Court Joint Motion to Approve Manner of Notice [ECF# 138]
PC-IN-0013-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/18/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs’ Motion to Approve Amended Class Notice [ECF# 145]
PC-IN-0013-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/20/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Report of Class Counsel [ECF# 152]
PC-IN-0013-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/10/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Closing Case [ECF# 163] (2019 WL 3306204) (S.D. Ind.)
PC-IN-0013-0008.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 07/23/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Hanlon, James Patrick (S.D. Ind.) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0008 | PC-IN-0013-9000
McKinney, Larry J. (S.D. Ind.) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0003 | PC-IN-0013-0004 | PC-IN-0013-0006
Plaintiff's Lawyers Alexander, Elizabeth R. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0008 | PC-IN-0013-9000
Falk, Kenneth J. (Indiana) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0001 | PC-IN-0013-0002 | PC-IN-0013-0003 | PC-IN-0013-0007 | PC-IN-0013-0008 | PC-IN-0013-0009 | PC-IN-0013-0010 | PC-IN-0013-9000
Fathi, David Cyrus (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0001 | PC-IN-0013-0002 | PC-IN-0013-0003 | PC-IN-0013-0008
Defendant's Lawyers Arthur, David A. (Indiana) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0002 | PC-IN-0013-0008 | PC-IN-0013-0009 | PC-IN-0013-9000
Bramer, Richard M (Indiana) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0003 | PC-IN-0013-0008
Weaver, Todd (Colorado) show/hide docs
PC-IN-0013-0008

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