Case: Arias v. Wainwright

4:79-cv-00792 | U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida

Filed Date: March 23, 1979

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On March 23, 1979, prisoners in Florida's county jails filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Florida against the Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections. The class consisted of all persons who were or would be confined in the county jails. Southern Legal Counsel, the Florida Justice Institute, the ACLU National Prison Project, and private counsel represented the class. The plaintiffs sought declaratory and injunctive relief…

On March 23, 1979, prisoners in Florida's county jails filed a class action lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Florida against the Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections. The class consisted of all persons who were or would be confined in the county jails. Southern Legal Counsel, the Florida Justice Institute, the ACLU National Prison Project, and private counsel represented the class. The plaintiffs sought declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that the defendant failed to carry out his duty to promulgate and maintain minimum constitutional standards in the county jails. The plaintiffs further alleged that the conditions at the county jails constituted cruel and unusual punishment, and violated the constitutional guarantees of equal protection and due process.

According to the complaint the plaintiffs were subjected to continuous cell confinement, denial of adequate recreation, arbitrary restrictions on visitation and correspondence, inadequate and unsanitary living conditions, arbitrary and cruel discipline, and the risk of inmate-on-inmate violence. The plaintiffs also complained that they were denied access to the courts, work, education, and rehabilitative opportunities.

In 1981, the defendant, the Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections, filed a lawsuit in Florida State Court against Monroe County, the Monroe County Sheriff, and the county commissioners, who were responsible for the operation and maintenance of the county jails. The Department of Corrections sought injunctive relief, alleging that Monroe County failed to operate and manage the Monroe County Jail in compliance with state law.

After negotiation, the parties reached an agreement on June 12, 1981. The Stipulation and Agreement was signed and dated by the District Court (Magistrate Judge Crongeyer) on July 9, 1981. The agreement resolved the disputes between the parties regarding the duty of the defendant to conduct adequate jail inspections, and the duty of the defendant to take effective action to enforce the rules and regulations governing the maintenance and operation of Florida jails. The stipulated agreement did not address the sufficiency of the rules and regulations that were in place. The agreement further provided that the action be dismissed with prejudice. The District Court (Judge William Stafford), in compliance with the agreement, dismissed the action on December 21, 1981. The court retained jurisdiction for the purpose of enforcement and execution of the agreement.

Although the Governor of Florida was not a party to the action, the parties sought the governor's endorsement of the agreement. The governor, however, refused his endorsement.

We have no further information on this case. Thus, it appears to be closed.

Summary Authors

Kaitlin Corkran (6/13/2006)

People


Judge(s)

Crongeyer, Robert L. Jr. (Florida)

Stafford, William Henry Jr. (Florida)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Bendheim, Alice L. (Arizona)

Berg, Randall Challen Jr. (Florida)

Bregman, Lynn (District of Columbia)

Bronstein, Alvin J. (District of Columbia)

DeMent, Ira (Alabama)

Hadeed, Albert J. (Florida)

Killory, Joseph E. (District of Columbia)

Knowles, Ralph I. Jr. (Georgia)

Judge(s)

Crongeyer, Robert L. Jr. (Florida)

Stafford, William Henry Jr. (Florida)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Bendheim, Alice L. (Arizona)

Berg, Randall Challen Jr. (Florida)

Bregman, Lynn (District of Columbia)

Bronstein, Alvin J. (District of Columbia)

DeMent, Ira (Alabama)

Hadeed, Albert J. (Florida)

Killory, Joseph E. (District of Columbia)

Knowles, Ralph I. Jr. (Georgia)

Mathews, Arthur F. (District of Columbia)

Ney, Steven (Maryland)

Petrey, Roderick N. (Florida)

Sheppard, William J. (Florida)

Taylor, Stuart S. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Vandercoy, David E. (Indiana)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Franks, Mitchell D. (Florida)

McKenzie, Sydney H. III (Florida)

Peters, James Allen (Florida)

Smith, Jim (Florida)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

81-1455-CA-17

Complaint

Florida state trial court

March 23, 1979

March 23, 1979

Complaint

4:79-cv-00792

Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief (Class Action)

March 23, 1979

March 23, 1979

Complaint

4:79-cv-00792

Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief (Class Action)

April 12, 1979

April 12, 1979

Complaint

4:79-cv-00792

Order

April 18, 1979

April 18, 1979

Order/Opinion

Letter w/Stipulation

No Court

June 3, 1981

June 3, 1981

Correspondence

4:79-cv-00792

Stipulation and Agreement of Partial Settlement

June 12, 1981

June 12, 1981

Pleading / Motion / Brief

4:79-cv-00792

Letter/Amended Page of Stipulation and Agreement

July 10, 1981

July 10, 1981

Pleading / Motion / Brief

Letter

No Court

July 28, 1981

July 28, 1981

Internal memorandum

4:79-cv-00792

Notice of Amendment to Stipulation and Agreement of Partial Settlementt

Aug. 5, 1981

Aug. 5, 1981

Pleading / Motion / Brief

4:79-cv-00792

Plaintiffs' Memorandum in Response to Class Members' Comments and Objections to the Proposed Stipulation and Agreement of Partial Settlement

Sept. 18, 1981

Sept. 18, 1981

Pleading / Motion / Brief

Resources

Docket

Last updated July 20, 2022, 3:07 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Florida

Case Type(s):

Jail Conditions

Key Dates

Filing Date: March 23, 1979

Case Ongoing: No reason to think so

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

All persons who were or would be confined in Florida's county jails.

Attorney Organizations:

ACLU National (all projects)

ACLU National Prison Project

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: Unknown

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

Florida State Department of Corrections, State

County and Municipal Jails (statewide), State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Constitutional Clause(s):

Cruel and Unusual Punishment

Due Process

Equal Protection

Availably Documents:

Complaint (any)

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Mixed

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Order Duration: 1981 - None

Issues

General:

Access to lawyers or judicial system

Assault/abuse by residents/inmates/students

Disciplinary procedures

Education

Law library access

Mail

Phone

Recreation / Exercise

Sanitation / living conditions

Affected Gender:

Male

Type of Facility:

Government-run