Case: Beard v. Lee

66-04345 | U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama

Filed Date: 1966

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

Sometime prior to 1967, an inmate at the Atmore Prison Farm in Alabama filed a pro se lawsuit 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Alabama Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama. The plaintiff asked the court for injunctive relief, alleging that the defendants had violated his constitutional rights by segregating the inmates by race and subjecting the black inmates to inferior conditions of confinement than the other inmates. On March 6, 1967, the U.…

Sometime prior to 1967, an inmate at the Atmore Prison Farm in Alabama filed a pro se lawsuit 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against the Alabama Department of Corrections in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama. The plaintiff asked the court for injunctive relief, alleging that the defendants had violated his constitutional rights by segregating the inmates by race and subjecting the black inmates to inferior conditions of confinement than the other inmates.

On March 6, 1967, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama (Judge Virgil Pittman) dismissed the petition without prejudice, ruling that a December 12, 1966 order of the Middle District of Alabama in the case of Washington v. Lee, 263 F.Supp. 327 (M.D.Ala. 1966), PC-AL-0020, had set forth clearly the right of black citizens not to be subjected to racial distinctions in the state penal system. That case had been a class action, and the court in this case found the plaintiff to be a member of that class.

Meanwhile, the plaintiff in this case appealed the district court's dismissal of his lawsuit. On July 1, 1968, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (Judges John Cooper Godbold, John Milton Bryan Simpson, and William Allen McRae) reversed the district court's dismissal and remanded the case, finding that some of the plaintiff's complaints were not addressed by the Washington order and directing the district court to allow the plaintiff to bring his lawsuit. Beard v. Lee, 396 F.2d 749 (5th Cir. 1968).

On January 24, 1969, the district court (Judge Daniel Holcombe Thomas) granted in part and dismissed in part the plaintiff's request for injunctive relief, ordering the defendants to discontinue certain disciplinary practices and to institute specific conditions and treatment. We have no further information on the proceedings in this case.

Summary Authors

Kristen Sagar (9/10/2006)

Related Cases

Washington v. Lee, Middle District of Alabama (1966)

People


Judge(s)

Coleman, James Plemon (Louisiana)

Godbold, John Cooper (Louisiana)

McRae, William Allan Jr. (Louisiana)

Simpson, John Milton Bryan (Florida)

Wisdom, John Minor (Louisiana)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Gallion, MacDonald (Alabama)

Hall, Leslie (Alabama)

Madison, Gordon (Alabama)

Judge(s)

Coleman, James Plemon (Louisiana)

Godbold, John Cooper (Louisiana)

McRae, William Allan Jr. (Louisiana)

Simpson, John Milton Bryan (Florida)

Wisdom, John Minor (Louisiana)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Gallion, MacDonald (Alabama)

Hall, Leslie (Alabama)

Madison, Gordon (Alabama)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Reported Opinion

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

396 F.2d 749

July 1, 1968 Order/Opinion

Reported Opinion

Minniefee v. Hale

U. S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

429 F.2d 1239

July 20, 1970 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Docket

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

State / Territory: Alabama

Case Type(s):

Prison Conditions

Key Dates

Filing Date: 1966

Case Ongoing: Perhaps, but long-dormant

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Convict alleging unconstitutional treatment of prisoners at state prison

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: Yes

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Atmore State Prison, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Constitutional Clause(s):

Cruel and Unusual Punishment

Availably Documents:

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Litigation

Order Duration: 1969 - 0

Issues

General:

Racial segregation

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination

Type of Facility:

Government-run