Resource: Three Judge Panel Takes Further Step Toward Prison Cap on California


October 11, 2007

The drama of whether and when federal courts in California will order population caps on California's super-sized and massively overcrowded prison system took another step forward yesterday. The three judge panel composed of Appeals Court Judge Stephen Reinhardt from the 9th Circuit and two District Court judges, Judge Lawrence Karlton of the ED District of California and Judge Thelton E. Henderson of the Northern District issued a seven page ruling (check here for it to be posted) that set out a briefing a trial schedule for a two part process. In phase I, the plaintiffs will have the burden of proving that a prison population cap is the least intrusive approach the courts can take in relieving the unconstitutional conditions brought on by the overcrowding. If the courts find with the plaintiffs in phase I, phase II will unfold to consider the actual form a population cap remedy might take.

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