On July 24, 1983, inmates at Rahway State prison filed a law suit pro se against officials and employees of the New Jersey State Department of Corrections in the United States District Court, District of New Jersey, alleging violations of their constitutional rights. Specifically, plaintiffs ...
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On July 24, 1983, inmates at Rahway State prison filed a law suit pro se against officials and employees of the New Jersey State Department of Corrections in the United States District Court, District of New Jersey, alleging violations of their constitutional rights. Specifically, plaintiffs alleged that defendants had violated the Fourth, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution by conducting urine tests of inmates. Two other pro se complaints contesting the urine tests consolidated with this case and class certification was granted on April 6, 1984. The class consisted of all present and future inmates subjected to urine analysis utilizing an Enzyme Multiple-Immunoassay (EMIT') test. Plaintiffs, later represented by private counsel, sought declaratory and injunctive relief.
After a May 14, 1984 hearing, on May 15, 1984 the district court entered the consent decree signed by the parties on April 6, 1984. The decree set forth procedures governing when urine monitoring could be ordered, the manner in which the tests were to be administered, and the manner in which urine specimens were to be handled and tested.
On January 26, 1998, defendants filed a motion to terminate the 1984 consent decree pursuant to the termination provisions of the Prison Litigation Reform Act. On April 9, 1998, the United States Department of Justice intervened on the question of the constitutionality of the PLRA termination provisions. Plaintiffs contended that the termination provisions of the PLRA are unconstitutional because they violate the separation of powers doctrine by requiring the reopening of a final judgment, by prescribing a rule of decision in a pending action, and by depriving the Court of the ability to provide an effective remedy for violations of Plaintiffs' constitutional rights. Additionally, Plaintiffs argued that the immediate termination provisions violate their right to equal protection.
On May 4, 1998, the district court (Judge Dickinson Richards Debevoise) denied defendants' motion, finding that the immediate termination provision of the PLRA violated the separation of powers doctrine. Denike v. Fauver, 3 F.Supp.2d 540 (D.N.J. 1998). We have no further information on this case.Emilee Baker - 09/30/2006