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Prisons & Jails

Sep 11, 2023

Prisons & Jails – Parole Denial – Facts of Offense – Juvenile Offender – Exemplary Inmate

The appellant-inmate has been imprisoned for 50 years for a crime he committed at age 17. The jury recommended mercy, and there appears to be no dispute that appellant has been an exemplary inmate and demonstrated remorse, rehabilitation and a low risk for recidivism. While it seems that the review conducted by the Parole Board […]

Sep 11, 2023

Prisons & Jails – Parole Denial – Inmate’s Files – Right to Access

The Parole Board of the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services’ (the Board’s) Form 1212 says in part, “[I]nmates themselves have no right to inspect the contents of their files. If the inmate thinks his/her file is somehow incomplete or contains some errors or other inaccuracy, he/she must notify the Board of […]

Feb 10, 2023

Prisons & Jails – Constitutional – Death Penalty – Execution Methods – Discovery – Lethal Injection

In four death-row inmates’ challenge to the constitutionality of two of the three execution methods set out in S.C. Code Ann. § 24-3-530 (electrocution and firing squad), the circuit court abused its discretion by denying the inmates’ discovery requests for information regarding the availability of lethal injection and the state’s efforts in making this execution […]

Oct 26, 2017

Criminal Practice – Identification Procedure – Suggestive – Necessary – Prisons & Jails

State v. Wyatt (Lawyers Weekly No. 010-058-17, 10 pp.) (John Cannon Few, J.) (Kaye Hearn, J., concurring) Appealed from Lancaster County (DeAndrea Benjamin, J.) On writ of certiorari to the Court of Appeals. S.C. S. Ct. Holding: Minutes after a prison guard observed someone throwing items over the prison fence, a man fitting the description […]

Sep 13, 2012

Administrative – Prisons & Jails – ALC Jurisdiction – Future Credits – Constitutional

Howard v. South Carolina Department of Corrections Pursuant to the current version of S.C. Code Ann. § 1-23-600(D), the Administrative Law Court may not hear prisoner appeals involving only the loss of the opportunity to earn sentence-related credits; however, the ALC must consider whether a prisoner’s appeal implicates a state-created liberty or property interest.

Aug 3, 2012

Criminal Practice – RICO Conspiracy – Gang Members – Prisons & Jails

U.S. v. Mouzone The 4th Circuit rejects claims of error by two defendants convicted of a RICO conspiracy for their participation in criminal activities of the Tree Top Piru gang, a prison-based subset of the Bloods gang that developed in the Maryland prison system.

Jul 26, 2012

Tort/Negligence – Negligent Supervision – Public Employees – Gross Negligence Standard – Prisons & Jails – Sexual Assault by Guard

Hamilton v. Charleston County Sheriff’s Department Plaintiff’s criminologist testified that defendant was grossly negligent because it had grossly violated nationally accepted standards by failing to (1) minimize contact between male officers and female inmates, (2) monitor the officers’ whereabouts, and (3) implement adequate supervision mechanisms such as cameras and locked doors.

Jul 20, 2012

Criminal Practice – Prisons & Jails – Possession of Contraband – Shank in Shoe – Sentencing – Career Offender – Violent Crime

U.S. v. Mobley An inmate convicted of possessing contraband, after he was discovered with a shank in his shoe, can be sentenced as a career offender because possession of the shank qualified as a crime of violence under the federal sentencing guidelines, the 4th Circuit says.

Jul 11, 2012

Prisons & Jails – Constitutional – Due Process & Ex Post Facto Clauses – Parole Denial Policy – Violent Offenders

Burnette v. Fahey Plaintiff Virginia inmates have not stated due process and ex post facto claims against defendant members of the Virginia Parole Board in their official capacities for an alleged policy of denying parole to parole-eligible inmates convicted of violent offenses; the 4th Circuit affirms dismissal of the inmates’ complaint.

Jun 6, 2012

Prisons & Jails – Civil Rights – ‘3 Strikes’ Dismissal – Inmate’s Appeal

Henslee v. Keller In an inmate’s suit alleging prison barbers do not sanitize equipment and put inmates at risk for infection, the district court’s dismissal of the suit cannot act as “strike three” that prevents the inmate from gaining IFP status to appeal the dismissal; the 4th Circuit joins the majority of federal appellate courts to consider the question to hold that a distric[...]

May 30, 2012

Criminal Practice – Prisons & Jails — Habeas Corpus – ‘Good Time’ Credits — Custody Grade

Waddell v. Dep’t of Correction A North Carolina prisoner whose 1975 death sentence was commuted to life in prison loses his challenge to the state’s application of “good time” credits to allegedly extend his sentence beyond his effective release date; the 4th Circuit upholds the district court decision that the prisoner’s habeas petition...

May 18, 2012

Prisons & Jails – Constitutional – Pretrial Detainee – Suicide – Deliberate Indifference Claim

Millmine v. Harris In the light most favorable to plaintiff, the evidence and permissible inferences indicate that the defendant-correctional officers knew that plaintiff’s decedent was on suicide watch and had been prohibited from having any potentially dangerous materials – such as tearable fabric...

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