University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Bergamaschi v. Cuomo JC-NY-0081
Docket / Court 1:20-cv-02817 ( S.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Special Collection COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Attorney Organization New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU)
Case Summary
COVID-19 Summary: This is a putative class action challenging a New York law that requires mandatory detention of all alleged parole violators. The plaintiffs sought to enjoin application of the law and argued the lawsuit took on "particular urgency" due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The court denied ... read more >
COVID-19 Summary: This is a putative class action challenging a New York law that requires mandatory detention of all alleged parole violators. The plaintiffs sought to enjoin application of the law and argued the lawsuit took on "particular urgency" due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The court denied the motion for preliminary injunction on April 20. Both parties filed for summary judgment in late 2020. The court granted summary judgment for the defendants on March 10, 2021 and ordered the case closed. The plaintiffs appealed.


On April 3, 2020, two individuals jailed on parole warrants filed this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf of a proposed class of all those on parole in New York City who were or would be detained pending final hearing on a parole warrant. Represented by the New York Civil Liberties Union, the plaintiffs sued the Governor of New York and the New York State Board of Parole under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201-2202. The plaintiffs alleged that detaining them pending parole hearings violated their Due Process rights under the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the New York Constitution. They sought declaratory and injunctive relief along with attorney's fees. The case was assigned to Judge Colleen McMahon and Magistrate Judge Debra C. Freeman.

The next day, the plaintiffs filed a motion to certify the class. On April 6, the plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction, requiring the defendants to provide the plaintiffs with: (1) immediate evaluation for those currently detained, and prompt hearing for future arrestees, which would allow detainees to be heard on their suitability for release and rebut the justifications given for their detention, (2) notice of the hearing and reasons supporting detention, (3) a neutral decision-maker, and (4) if detention was required, an explanation of why, including the evidence relied upon.

On April 20, Judge McMahon denied the motion for a preliminary injunction, finding that the New York's process for detention pending parole hearings conferred sufficient rights on alleged parole violaters. Judge McMahon also noted that, while COVID-19 was in the backdrop of the litigation, the case was not about whether detaining individuals during COVID-19 was constitutional. 2020 WL 1910754.

On May 12, the plaintiffs filed an amended complaint, and the defendants filed answers to the complaint on June 9.

The plaintiffs filed another brief in support of their motion for class certification on June 22.

The parties began to engage in discovery, which did not go smoothly. On September 14, Judge McMahon encouraged the parties to resolve their disputes because "I am not going to waste time reading your 'it's his fault/it's her fault' issues."

On October 23, defendants filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that the plaintiffs are not entitled to a custody release determination under the due process clause. Defendants argue that the due process clause does not require New York to provide a custody release hearing to parolees, and furthermore, that the complaint against the governor should also be dismissed on the basis of sovereign immunity and immunity under the 11th Amendment.

On November 20, plaintiffs filed a cross-motion for summary judgment and in opposition to the defendants' motion for summary judgment. Plaintiffs argued that they should be granted summary judgment, because the undisputed material facts demonstrate that the existing parole hearing process is not sufficient to protect plaintiffs' conditional liberty interest. Additionally, they argued that defendants' should not be granted summary judgment, because there is still a question of material facts in regard to their arguments.

On March 10, 2021, Judge Colleen McMahon issued an order granting defendants' motion for summary judgment, and denying plaintiffs' cross-motion for summary judgment, terminating all pending motions. Judgment was entered in favor of the defendants and the case was closed.

On April 5, plaintiffs appealed the judgment. Their appeal is currently pending.

Caitlin Kierum - 07/20/2020
Timothy Leake - 10/19/2020
Tessa McEvoy - 05/31/2021


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Due Process: Procedural Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief denied
COVID-19
Mitigation Denied
Mitigation Requested
Release Denied
Release Requested
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Classification / placement
Conditions of confinement
Over/Unlawful Detention
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
State law
Defendant(s) Governor of New York
New York State Board of Parole
Plaintiff Description Two individuals who had been detained on parole warrants pending a final hearing. Putative Class: All those on parole in New York City who were or would be detained pending final hearing on a parole warrant
Indexed Lawyer Organizations New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU)
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status outcome Mooted before ruling
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Filed 04/03/2020
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
  Bergamaschi et al. v. Cuomo et al
NYCLU
Date: Apr. 3, 2020
By: NYCLU
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Court Docket(s)
S.D.N.Y.
04/05/2021
1:20-cv-02817-CM
JC-NY-0081-9000.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
S.D.N.Y.
04/03/2020
Class Action Complaint [ECF# 1]
JC-NY-0081-0001.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/04/2020
Motion to Certify Class [ECF# 5, 6, 7 (& 7-1 to 7-4), 8 (& 8-1 to 8-4)]
JC-NY-0081-0002.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/06/2020
Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 13]
JC-NY-0081-0003.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/07/2020
Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 19]
JC-NY-0081-0004.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/10/2020
Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 28]
JC-NY-0081-0005.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/13/2020
Reply Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 32]
JC-NY-0081-0006.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
04/20/2020
Order Denying Plaintiffs' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 33] (2020 WL 1910754)
JC-NY-0081-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
05/12/2020
Amended Class Action Complaint [ECF# 38]
JC-NY-0081-0008.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
06/08/2020
Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification [ECF# 44]
JC-NY-0081-0009.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
06/09/2020
Defendant Andrew M. Cuomo's Answer to Amended Complaint [ECF# 45]
JC-NY-0081-0010.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
06/09/2020
Defendant Tina M. Stanford's Answer to Amended Complaint [ECF# 46]
JC-NY-0081-0011.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
06/22/2020
Plaintiffs' Reply in Support of Their Motion for Class Certification [ECF# 47]
JC-NY-0081-0012.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
10/23/2020
Notice of Motion [Motion for Summary Judgment] [ECF# 57]
JC-NY-0081-0013.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
10/23/2020
Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Support of their Motion for Summary Judgment [ECF# 62]
JC-NY-0081-0014.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
11/20/2020
Notice of Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment [ECF# 65]
JC-NY-0081-0015.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
S.D.N.Y.
03/10/2021
Decision and Order Granting Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment, Denying Plaintiffs' Cross Motion for Summary Judgment, and Amending the Caption in this Action [ECF# 86] (2021 WL 918293)
JC-NY-0081-0016.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges McMahon, Colleen (S.D.N.Y.) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0007 | JC-NY-0081-0016 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Biklen, Molly Knopp (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0001 | JC-NY-0081-0002 | JC-NY-0081-0003 | JC-NY-0081-0004 | JC-NY-0081-0006 | JC-NY-0081-0008 | JC-NY-0081-0012 | JC-NY-0081-0015 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Desgranges, Philip L. (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0001 | JC-NY-0081-0002 | JC-NY-0081-0003 | JC-NY-0081-0004 | JC-NY-0081-0006 | JC-NY-0081-0008 | JC-NY-0081-0012 | JC-NY-0081-0015 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Dunn, Christopher (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0001 | JC-NY-0081-0002 | JC-NY-0081-0003 | JC-NY-0081-0004 | JC-NY-0081-0008 | JC-NY-0081-0012 | JC-NY-0081-0015 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Lambright, Daniel Ross (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0015 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Li, Grace Y (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0001 | JC-NY-0081-0002 | JC-NY-0081-0003 | JC-NY-0081-0004 | JC-NY-0081-0006 | JC-NY-0081-0008 | JC-NY-0081-0012
Stoughton, Corey (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0001 | JC-NY-0081-0002 | JC-NY-0081-0003 | JC-NY-0081-0004 | JC-NY-0081-0006 | JC-NY-0081-0008 | JC-NY-0081-0012 | JC-NY-0081-0015 | JC-NY-0081-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Amer, Andrew Stuart (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0005 | JC-NY-0081-0009 | JC-NY-0081-0010 | JC-NY-0081-0011 | JC-NY-0081-0013 | JC-NY-0081-0014 | JC-NY-0081-9000
James, Letitia (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0005 | JC-NY-0081-0009 | JC-NY-0081-0010 | JC-NY-0081-0011 | JC-NY-0081-0013 | JC-NY-0081-0014
Yoon, Amanda (New York) show/hide docs
JC-NY-0081-0005 | JC-NY-0081-0009 | JC-NY-0081-0010 | JC-NY-0081-0011 | JC-NY-0081-0013 | JC-NY-0081-0014 | JC-NY-0081-9000

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -