On March 27, 1996 women prisoners at Scott Correctional Facility and Florence Crane Facility in Michigan filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiffs alleged that they were subjected to a pattern and practice of sexual harassment and abuse as a result of the Michigan Department of Correction's (DOC) failure to train properly and discipline its staff. Defendants moved to dismiss. The district court (Judge John Corbett O'Meara) granted the motion with respect to plaintiffs' claims against the DOC and monetary damage claims against Kenneth McGinnis in his official capacity as Director of the DOC. Nunn v. Michigan Dept. of Corr., No. 96-71416, 1997 WL 33559323 (E.D.Mich. Feb. 4, 1997). All other claims against McGinnis and corrections officers and other staff remained.
Judge O'Meara denied McGinnis's subsequent motion to dismiss. Nunn v. McGinnis, No. 96-71416, 1997 WL 33559327 (E.D.Mich. July 28, 1997). The court also denied a motion to stay pending appeal. 1997 WL 33559328 (E.D.Mich. Sept. 17, 1997). It granted plaintiffs' motion to amend, allowing plaintiffs to add two new inmates as plaintiffs and to add defendant Fullmer, a corrections officer who was accused of sexually assaulting one of the plaintiffs. 1997 WL 33559326 (E.D.Mich. June 16, 1997). As litigation continued, this case was consolidated with U.S.A. v. Michigan (PC-MI-0009) for purposes of discovery. That case settled in May 1999.
Settlement conferences for this case were held in 2000 and the parties signed a Settlement Agreement Regarding Injunctive and Declaratory Relief on July 31, 2000. According to the agreement, the DOC would develop and maintain a policy regarding sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, and retaliation. The settlement also addressed screening of prospective employees, staff training, prisoner education, and the process for investigating allegations of misconduct.
The parties entered into a conditional dismissal on August 17, 2000, pending reports of the compliance expert. The final report was submitted on December 3, 2002 and concluded that defendants substantially complied with the settlement agreement, with the exception that the defendants had not yet fully staffed housing units with female officers. On February 19, 2003, the court (Judge O'Meara) ordered a partial unconditional dismissal, maintaining jurisdiction over the staffing issue. On October 28, 2004, defendants moved for full unconditional dismissal of the action but withdrew that motion on September 29, 2005.
On April 25, 2007 the parties agreed that only female officers would be assigned to the facilities covered by the settlement agreement, which brought the dispute to a close. The court then ordered dismissal of the case, leaving the Plaintiffs free to pursue Defendants who defaulted on the settlement agreement. Joshua Arocho - 07/11/2012