University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Leyba v. Santa Fe County JC-NM-0003
Docket / Court 6:05-cv-00036-BB-ACT ( D.N.M. )
State/Territory New Mexico
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Special Collection Strip Search Cases
Case Summary
On January 12, 2005, a group of pre-arraignment detainees filed this class action civil rights lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the United States District Court for New Mexico, challenging the strip search policy in effect at the Santa Fe County Detention Facility. The policy at issue ... read more >
On January 12, 2005, a group of pre-arraignment detainees filed this class action civil rights lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the United States District Court for New Mexico, challenging the strip search policy in effect at the Santa Fe County Detention Facility. The policy at issue required that all persons to be housed in the Detention Center be strip searched for weapons and contraband, regardless of the offense charged and whether or not there was individualized reasonable suspicion that the search would lead to the discovery of contraband or weapons. Plaintiffs maintained that the policy violated the Fourth Amendment's ban on unreasonable searches and seizures. They sought monetary damages and injunctive relief. Management & Training Corporation (the company that was contracted to operated the Detention Center), the Santa Fe County Board of Commissioners and Santa Fe County Sheriffs were named as defendants.

From January 2005 through November 2005, the parties engaged in extensive discovery, including document production, numerous depositions, inspection of the Detention Center and analysis of over 31,000 individual booking records. Settlement talks began in 2005 and included a six day mediation session before retired District Court Judge Raul A. Ramirez of California. Negotiations continued until a deal was reached in June 2006.

On July 24, 2006, the District Court (District Judge Bruce D. Black) preliminarily approved the Stipulation of Settlement and certified the case as a class action.

Following a fairness hearing, the District Court entered its final order approving the settlement and closing the case on December 8, 2006. Under the terms of the settlement, defendants agreed to pay $8.5 million into a settlement fund. Up to $5,529,750.00, plus interest earned on the settlement fund, would be allocated to pay verified claims. If the total amount of verified claims exceeded that amount, the amount payable to each member for each claim would be proportionately reduced. If the total amount of verified claims was less than that amount, the balance would be refunded to the defendants. $2 million was allocated for attorneys' fees and costs, and $470,250.00 was allocated equally among the class representatives. Up to $500,000 was to be paid for claims administration costs, with restrictions to come into play if administration expenses incurred were more or less than that amount.

The case is now closed.

Dan Dalton - 02/17/2008
Lakshmi Gopal - 02/21/2016
Virginia Weeks - 10/18/2016


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
General
Strip search policy
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
State law
Defendant(s) Management and Training Corporation
Santa Fe County
Santa Fe County Detention Facility
Plaintiff Description All who, from January 12, 2002 to the present, were arrested and subjected to a strip search and/or body cavity search at the Santa Fe County Detention Facility without reasonable suspicion of the discovery of contraband or weapons.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Damages
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2006
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Links Jail Strip-Search Cases: Patterns and Participants
http://law.duke.edu/journals/lcp
By: Margo Schlanger (Washington University in St. Louis)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
6:05-cv-00036-BB-ACT (D.N.M.)
JC-NM-0003-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/21/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint for Damages for Violation of Civil and Constitutional Rights and for Declaratory and Injunctive Rights
JC-NM-0003-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/12/2005
Joint Unopposed Motion for Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement
JC-NM-0003-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/06/2006
Notice of Proposed Settlement of Santa Fe County Class Action Strip Search Case
JC-NM-0003-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/24/2006
Order Granting Preliminary Approval of Settlement Agreement and Approving the Form and Manner of Notice (D.N.M.)
JC-NM-0003-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/24/2006
Supplement [re motion for order for entry of stipulated order amending preliminary approval of settlement agreement]
JC-NM-0003-0015.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/18/2006
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulated Order Amending Preliminary Approval of Settlement Agreement and the Form and Manner of Notice (D.N.M.)
JC-NM-0003-0012.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/20/2006
Class Action Claim Form
JC-NM-0003-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/27/2006
Affidavit of Mark Patton in Support of Joint Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement
JC-NM-0003-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/29/2006
Affidavit of Paul Bardacke in Support of Approval of Attorneys Fees and Costs
JC-NM-0003-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/29/2006
Affidavit of John C. Bienvenu in Support of Joint Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement and Approval of Attorneys Fees, Costs and Incentive Payments
JC-NM-0003-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/30/2006
Affidavit of Robert R. Rothstein in Support of Joint Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement and Approval of Attorneys Fees, Costs and Incentive Payments
JC-NM-0003-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/30/2006
Joint Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement
JC-NM-0003-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/01/2006
Memo in Support of Approval of Reasonable Attorneys Fees, Costs and Incentive Payments
JC-NM-0003-0013.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/01/2006
Affidavit of Mark H. Donatelli in Support of Joint Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement Agreement and Approval of Attorneys Fees, Costs and Incentive Payments
JC-NM-0003-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/04/2006
Final Judgment of Dismissal and Order Granting Final Approval of Settlement Agreement (D.N.M.)
JC-NM-0003-0014.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/08/2006
Joint Motion [to Amend/Correct by United States Of America]
JC-NM-0003-0016.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/24/2008
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Motion [to Alter/Amend Judgment by United States Of America]
JC-NM-0003-0017.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/25/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Black, Bruce D. (D.N.M.)
JC-NM-0003-0008 | JC-NM-0003-0009 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Motz, J. Frederick (D. Md.)
JC-NM-0003-0017
Torgerson, Alan C. (D.N.M.) [Magistrate]
JC-NM-0003-9000
Monitors/Masters Patton, Mark (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0004
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bardacke, Paul (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0005
Becker, Grace Chung (District of Columbia)
JC-NM-0003-0016
Bienvenu, John C. (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0001 | JC-NM-0003-0002 | JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0013 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-0015 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Brown Cutlar, Shanetta Y. (District of Columbia)
JC-NM-0003-0016
Donatelli, Mark H. (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0001 | JC-NM-0003-0006 | JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0013 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-0015 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Rothstein, Robert R. (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0001 | JC-NM-0003-0003 | JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0013 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-0015 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Dickman, Michael (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Eaton, P. Scott (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Phillips, Grace (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-9000
Van Luchene, Gary J. (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Wihl, Kurt (New Mexico)
JC-NM-0003-0010 | JC-NM-0003-0011 | JC-NM-0003-0012 | JC-NM-0003-0014 | JC-NM-0003-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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