Case: Gartrell v. Federal Bureau of Prisons

1:10-cv-02160 | U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania

Filed Date: Oct. 20, 2010

Closed Date: 2013

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On October 20, 2010, a Muslim inmate confined to the Federal Correctional Institution in Minersville, Pennsylvania, filed a lawsuit in the the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act against the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The plaintiff, represented by counsel from the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project and private counsel, asked the court for injunctive relief, declaratory relief, and monetary damages, claiming that his right t…

On October 20, 2010, a Muslim inmate confined to the Federal Correctional Institution in Minersville, Pennsylvania, filed a lawsuit in the the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act against the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The plaintiff, represented by counsel from the Pennsylvania Institutional Law Project and private counsel, asked the court for injunctive relief, declaratory relief, and monetary damages, claiming that his right to free exercise of religion was violated. Specifically, the plaintiff claimed that the prison's policy, which only allowed Muslim to pray in the chapel or their individual cells, precluded the plaintiff from praying while he was at work or recreation.

On October 12, 2011, Judge William W. Caldwell denied the defendants' motion to dismiss or, in the alternative, summary judgment. Judge Caldwell held that the record contained sufficient evidence to lead a reasonable finder of fact to conclude that the defendants substantially burdened the plaintiff's exercise of his religion and that the plaintiff's evidence was sufficient to create a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the plaintiff and other Muslim inmates were treated differently from similarly situated inmates with other religious beliefs.

On May 10, 2013, the parties agreed to a compromise, settlement and release of both the Religious Freedom Restoration Act claim and the equal protection claim. The defendants agreed to a policy that allowed Muslims to pray at work and recreation at the times required by Islam with adequate floor covering. The defendants also agreed to pay $150,000 in full satisfaction of all claims, demands and rights to attorney's fees, costs, and expenses. On June 3, 2013, Judge Caldwell dismissed the case.

Summary Authors

Jessica Kincaid (7/7/2014)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4373324/parties/gartrell-v-federal-bureau-of-prisons/


Judge(s)

Caldwell, William W. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Fehretdinov, Maria A. (District of Columbia)

Golden, Deborah Maxine (District of Columbia)

Mancini, Laura A. (District of Columbia)

McPherson, Kelsey A. (District of Columbia)

Prins, Andrew (District of Columbia)

Sanders, Natalie N. (District of Columbia)

Thiel, G. (Pennsylvania)

Yeh, Su Ming (Pennsylvania)

Judge(s)

Caldwell, William W. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Fehretdinov, Maria A. (District of Columbia)

Golden, Deborah Maxine (District of Columbia)

Mancini, Laura A. (District of Columbia)

McPherson, Kelsey A. (District of Columbia)

Prins, Andrew (District of Columbia)

Sanders, Natalie N. (District of Columbia)

Thiel, G. (Pennsylvania)

Yeh, Su Ming (Pennsylvania)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

June 3, 2013 Docket
1

Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief, Monetary Damages and Attorneys' Fees

Oct. 20, 2010 Complaint
39

Order [Denying Motion to Dismiss]

Oct. 12, 2011 Order/Opinion

Agreement for Compromise, Settlement and Release of Religious Freedom Restoration Act and Equal Protection Claims

May 10, 2013 Settlement Agreement

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4373324/gartrell-v-federal-bureau-of-prisons/

Last updated May 11, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
45

1 Certificate of Concurrence

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2 Proposed Order

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PACER
46

PACER
47

PACER
48

1 Exhibit A

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PACER
49

PACER
1

COMPLAINT against all defendants ( Filing fee $350, Receipt Number 2009190), filed by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet)(aaa ) (Entered: 10/20/2010)

1

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2 Civil Cover Sheet

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Oct. 20, 2010 RECAP
2

Civil Cover Sheet.(Yeh, Su Ming) (Entered: 10/20/2010)

Oct. 20, 2010 PACER
3

PETITION FOR SPECIAL ADMISSION (PRO HAC VICE) by Maria A. Fehretdinov on behalf of Isadore Gartrell Attorney Maria A. Fehretdinov is seeking special admission. Filing fee $ 50, receipt number 03140000000002011725.. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 10/22/2010)

Oct. 22, 2010 RECAP
4

SPECIAL ADMISSIONS FORM APPROVED as to Maria Arhancet Fehretdinov, Esq. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 11/1/10. (pw, ) (Entered: 11/01/2010)

Nov. 1, 2010 PACER
5

ORDER Re: Case Assignment and Procedures in re: 1 Complaint filed by Isadore Gartrell sent to all counsel of record. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 12/1/10. (am) (Entered: 12/01/2010)

Dec. 1, 2010 PACER
6

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Isadore Gartrell. Federal Bureau of Prisons served on 10/29/2010, answer due 12/28/2010; USA Attorney General served on 10/29/2010, answer due 12/28/2010. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 12/08/2010)

Dec. 8, 2010 PACER
7

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Isadore Gartrell. US Attorney served on 11/9/2010, answer due 1/10/2011. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 12/08/2010)

Dec. 8, 2010 PACER
8

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Isadore Gartrell. Brandt served on 11/10/2010, answer due 1/10/2011; O.E. Brown served on 11/10/2010, answer due 1/10/2011; Jorge Castaneda served on 11/10/2010, answer due 1/10/2011; Howard Hufford served on 11/10/2010, answer due 1/10/2011; Kruleski served on 11/10/2010, answer due 1/10/2011. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 12/08/2010)

Dec. 8, 2010 PACER
9

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Isadore Gartrell. T.R. Sniezek served on 11/29/2010, answer due 1/28/2011. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 12/10/2010)

Dec. 10, 2010 RECAP
10

MOTION for Extension of Time to Respond to Complaint by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order, # 2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence)(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 01/10/2011)

1 Proposed Order

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2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence

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Jan. 10, 2011 PACER
11

ORDER - IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the mtn. is granted. 10 Defts. may answer or otherwise respond to the complt. on or before 3/11/11. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 1/10/11. (am) (Entered: 01/10/2011)

Jan. 10, 2011 PACER
12

Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response to the Complaint by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order, # 2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence)(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 03/11/2011)

1 Proposed Order

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2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence

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March 11, 2011 PACER
13

BRIEF IN OPPOSITION re 12 Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response to the Complaint filed by Isadore Gartrell.(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 03/11/2011)

March 11, 2011 PACER
14

ORDER - AND NOW, this 15th day of March, 2011, upon con. of the 2nd mtn. 12 for enlarge. of time filed by the US, it is ordered that: 1. The mtn. is granted. 2. Defts. shall have 30 days from the dt. of this order to answer or otherwise respond to the complt. 3. No further ext. will be granted. (See order) Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 3/15/11. (am) (Entered: 03/15/2011)

March 15, 2011 PACER
15

PETITION FOR SPECIAL ADMISSION (PRO HAC VICE) by Andrew Prins on behalf of Isadore Gartrell Attorney Andrew Prins is seeking special admission. Filing fee $ 50, receipt number 0314-2143268.. (Prins, Andrew) (Entered: 03/31/2011)

March 31, 2011 PACER
16

SPECIAL ADMISSIONS FORM APPROVED - as to Atty. Andrew Prins o/b/o plf. Isadore Garttell. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 4/11/11. (am) (Entered: 04/11/2011)

April 11, 2011 PACER
17

MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative, MOTION for Summary Judgment by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order, # 2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence)(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 04/14/2011)

1 Proposed Order

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2 Certificate of Nonconcurrence

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April 14, 2011 PACER
18

STATEMENT OF FACTS re 17 MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit(s), # 2 Exhibit(s))(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 04/28/2011)

1 Exhibit(s)

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2 Exhibit(s)

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April 28, 2011 PACER
19

BRIEF IN SUPPORT re 17 MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate of Compliance with Word Count)(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 04/28/2011)

1 Certificate of Compliance with Word Count

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April 28, 2011 PACER
20

Unopposed MOTION for Extension of Time to respond to Defendants' Motion to Dismiss or, In the Alternative, Motion for Summary Judgment by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate of Concurrence, # 2 Proposed Order)(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 05/09/2011)

1 Certificate of Concurrence

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2 Proposed Order

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May 9, 2011 PACER
21

ORDER granting 20 Motion to Extend Time. Plaintiff shall respond to defendant's motion to dismiss, or in the alternative, motion for summary judgment, on or before June 10, 2011. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 5/10/11 (pw, ) (Entered: 05/10/2011)

May 10, 2011 PACER
22

STIPULATION of Dismissal (Partial) by Isadore Gartrell. (Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 06/07/2011)

June 7, 2011 PACER
23

BRIEF IN OPPOSITION re 17 MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 List of Exhibits with Exhibits A-C, # 2 Declaration of Maria A. Fehretdinov, # 3 Declaration of Isadore Gartrell, # 4 Unpublished Opinion(s))(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 06/10/2011)

1 List of Exhibits with Exhibits A-C

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2 Declaration of Maria A. Fehretdinov

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3 Declaration of Isadore Gartrell

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4 Unpublished Opinion(s)

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June 10, 2011 PACER
24

ANSWER TO STATEMENT OF FACTS re 18 Statement of Facts, filed by Isadore Gartrell.(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 06/10/2011)

June 10, 2011 PACER
25

ORDER APPROVING STIPULATION - Pur. to FRCP 41(a)(1)(A)(ii), plf. Isadore Gartrell & defts. stipulate to the dismissal of (1) plf.'s request for nominal damages (but not for full costs & atty. fees) contained in paragraph (e) under the heading "Request for Relief" @ pg. 21 of plf.'s complt. 1 & (2) all claims against each deft. in their individual capacity (but not in their official capacity), where applicable, w/out prejudice, the parties to bear their own fees & costs. (See order) Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 6/13/11. (am, ) (Entered: 06/13/2011)

June 13, 2011 PACER
26

REPLY BRIEF re 17 MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit(s))(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 06/24/2011)

1 Exhibit(s)

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June 24, 2011 PACER
27

MOTION to Strike Reply Brief or, in the alternative, MOTION for Leave to File Sur-reply by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate of Nonconcurrence, # 2 Proposed Order #1, # 3 Proposed Order #2)(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 07/06/2011)

1 Certificate of Nonconcurrence

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2 Proposed Order #1

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3 Proposed Order #2

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July 6, 2011 PACER
28

BRIEF IN SUPPORT re 27 MOTION to Strike Reply Brief or, in the alternative MOTION for Leave to File Sur-reply filed by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 Unpublished Opinion(s))(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 07/06/2011)

1 Unpublished Opinion(s)

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July 6, 2011 PACER
29

BRIEF IN OPPOSITION re 27 MOTION to Strike Reply Brief or, in the alternative MOTION for Leave to File Sur-reply filed by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General.(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 07/07/2011)

July 7, 2011 PACER
30

ORDER - AND NOW, this 14th day of July, 2011, it is ordered that plf.'s mtn. to strike, or in the alternative, file a sur-reply brief 27 is granted in part. Plf.'s mtn. to strike is denied, but he may file a sur-reply brief on or before 7/22/11. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 7/14/11 (am, ) (Entered: 07/14/2011)

July 14, 2011 PACER
31

SUR REPLY to REPLY to Response to Motion re 17 MOTION to Dismiss or, in the alternative MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Isadore Gartrell. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Robert Carter, # 2 Supplemental Declaration of Isadore Gartrell, # 3 Unpublished Opinion(s))(Fehretdinov, Maria) (Entered: 07/22/2011)

1 Declaration of Robert Carter

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2 Supplemental Declaration of Isadore Gartrell

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3 Unpublished Opinion(s)

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July 22, 2011 PACER
32

PETITION FOR SPECIAL ADMISSION (PRO HAC VICE) by Laura A. Mancini on behalf of Isadore Gartrell Attorney Laura Mancini is seeking special admission. Filing fee $ 50, receipt number 0314-2242498.. (Mancini, Laura) (Entered: 07/27/2011)

July 27, 2011 PACER
33

PETITION FOR SPECIAL ADMISSION (PRO HAC VICE) by Kelsey A. McPherson on behalf of Isadore Gartrell Attorney Kelsey McPherson is seeking special admission. Filing fee $ 50, receipt number 0314-2242512.. (McPherson, Kelsey) (Entered: 07/27/2011)

July 27, 2011 PACER
34

PETITION FOR SPECIAL ADMISSION (PRO HAC VICE) by Natalie N. Sanders on behalf of Isadore Gartrell Attorney Natalie Sanders is seeking special admission. Filing fee $ 50, receipt number 0314-2244469.. (Sanders, Natalie) (Entered: 07/29/2011)

July 29, 2011 PACER
35

Petition for Special Admission of Natalie N. Sanders by Isadore Gartrell.. (Sanders, Natalie) (Entered: 08/04/2011)

Aug. 4, 2011 PACER
36

Petition for Special Admission of Kelsey McPherson by Isadore Gartrell.. (McPherson, Kelsey) (Entered: 08/04/2011)

Aug. 4, 2011 PACER
37

SPECIAL ADMISSIONS FORM APPROVED as to Attorney Natalie N. Sanders o/b/o plaintiff, Isadore Gartrell. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 8/9/11. (am, ) (Entered: 08/10/2011)

Aug. 9, 2011 PACER
38

SPECIAL ADMISSIONS FORM APPROVED as to Attorney Kelsey A. McPherson o/b/o plaintiff, Isadore Gartrell. Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 8/9/11. (am, ) (Entered: 08/10/2011)

Aug. 9, 2011 PACER
39

ORDER - ACCORDINGLY, this 12th day of Oct., 2011, upon con. of defts.' mtn. 17 to dismiss, or in the alternative, for SJ, it is ORDERED that said mtn. is DENIED. (See order for complete details.) Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 10/12/11 (am, ) (Entered: 10/12/2011)

Oct. 12, 2011 PACER
40

ANSWER to 1 Complaint by Brandt, O.E. Brown, Jorge Castaneda, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Howard Hufford, Kruleski, T.R. Sniezek, US Attorney, USA Attorney General.(Thiel, G.) (Entered: 10/26/2011)

Oct. 26, 2011 PACER
41

SCHEDULING ORDER: Case Management Conference set for 12/1/2011 11:30 AM in Harrisburg before Honorable William W. Caldwell. The conf. may be conducted by telephone pursuing the procedure on the attached notice. Joint Case Management Plan must be filed @ least 5 days prior to the conf. (See order for complete details.) Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 11/3/11. (am, ) (Entered: 11/03/2011)

Nov. 3, 2011 PACER
42

CASE MANAGEMENT PLAN (Joint) by Isadore Gartrell. (McPherson, Kelsey) (Entered: 11/22/2011)

Nov. 22, 2011 PACER
44

ORDER - AND NOW this 1st day of Dec., 2011, in connection w/the CMC in this matter, IT IS ORDERED THAT: Amended Pleadings due by 12/30/2012. Fact Discovery due by 6/1/2012. Joinder of Parties due by 12/30/2012. P.T. Motions due by 9/1/2012. Expert discovery shall be completed by 11/1/12. The expert report by the party bearing the burden of proof on the issue shall be field by 8/1/12. The expert report in response, if desired, shall be filed by 9/1/12. Suppl., if any, shall be filed by 10/1/12. 43 (See order for complete details.) Signed by Honorable William W. Caldwell on 12/1/11. (am, ) (Entered: 12/01/2011)

Dec. 1, 2011 PACER

State / Territory: Pennsylvania

Case Type(s):

Prison Conditions

Key Dates

Filing Date: Oct. 20, 2010

Closing Date: 2013

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

A Muslim inmate confined to the Federal Correctional Institution in Minersville, Pennsylvania

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Federal Bureau of Prisons, Federal

Defendant Type(s):

Corrections

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Religious Freedom Rest. Act/Religious Land Use and Inst. Persons Act (RFRA/RLUIPA)

Constitutional Clause(s):

Free Exercise Clause

Equal Protection

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Private Settlement Agreement

Amount Defendant Pays: 150,000

Issues

General:

Religious programs / policies

Discrimination-basis:

Religion discrimination

Type of Facility:

Government-run