Case: McCray v. Bennett

2:78-00027 | U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama

Filed Date: Jan. 24, 1978

Closed Date: Dec. 15, 1978

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In 1978, an inmate in the Alabama Prison System filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Alabama Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. The plaintiff alleged that the defendants had violated his constitutional rights by utilizing sentencing procedures that confined him in a segregation cell for disciplinary reasons. On December 15, 1978, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama (Judge Frank Minis Johnson, Jr.) held …

In 1978, an inmate in the Alabama Prison System filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Alabama Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. The plaintiff alleged that the defendants had violated his constitutional rights by utilizing sentencing procedures that confined him in a segregation cell for disciplinary reasons.

On December 15, 1978, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama (Judge Frank Minis Johnson, Jr.) held that the actions of the segregation review boards, which released some inmates from segregation long before their terms were served and confined others much longer than the fixed part of their sentences with only a perfunctory review and no objective criteria to guide them, violated the due process clause. The court also held that black prisoners suffered from racial discrimination in their confinement and retention in punitive segregation in violation of their right to equal protection under the constitution. The court ordered the Alabama State Board of Corrections to promulgate guidelines concerning operations of segregation review boards and make them available to prisoners confined in the segregation unit, to publish a list of valid factors that the review boards must consider in deciding whether to release an inmate from punitive segregation, and to provide written notice of the reasons for the bimonthly review board's actions to each prisoner denied release from segregation. McCray v. Bennett, 467 F.Supp. 187 (M.D.Ala. 1978). We have no further information on the proceedings in this case.

Summary Authors

Kristen Sagar (9/11/2006)

People


Judge(s)

Johnson, Frank Minis Jr. (Alabama)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Carroll, John L. (Alabama)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Baxley, William J. (Alabama)

Breland, Linda C. (Alabama)

Newman, Larry R. (Alabama)

Judge(s)

Johnson, Frank Minis Jr. (Alabama)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Carroll, John L. (Alabama)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Baxley, William J. (Alabama)

Breland, Linda C. (Alabama)

Newman, Larry R. (Alabama)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

2:78-00027

Memorandum Opinion

467 F.Supp. 187

Dec. 15, 1978

Dec. 15, 1978

Order/Opinion

Resources

Docket

Last updated Aug. 12, 2022, 3:04 a.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

Case Details

State / Territory: Alabama

Case Type(s):

Prison Conditions

Key Dates

Filing Date: Jan. 24, 1978

Closing Date: Dec. 15, 1978

Case Ongoing: No reason to think so

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Alabama prison inmates challenging as unconstitutional the sentencing practices followed in confining prisoners to segregation cells for disciplinary reasons

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

Alabama Prisons, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Equal Protection

Availably Documents:

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Litigation

Order Duration: 1978 - None

Issues

General:

Classification / placement

Disciplinary procedures

Disciplinary segregation

Racial segregation

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination

Type of Facility:

Government-run