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TATE v. CARLSON

May 15, 1984

OTIS J. TATE, Plaintiff, against NORMAN L. CARLSON, MICHAEL J. QUINLAN, Defendants.


The opinion of the court was delivered by: HAIGHT

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

HAIGHT, District Judge:

On January 14, 1976 plaintiff Otis J. Tate was sentenced in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania to an 18-year sentence for theft of government property and assault on a federal officer. He was ultimately confined at the Federal Correctional Institution at Otisville, N.Y.

 On April 9, 1983 Tate was involved in a fight with another inmant, who died of stab wounds. The prison authorities placed Tate in administrative detention pursuant to 28 C.F.R. § 541.22. "Administrative detention" is defined by that section of the regulations as "the status of confinement of an inmate in a special housing unit in a cell either by himself or with other inmates which serves to remove the inmate from the general population." Section 541.22(a) provides that the warden of the facility:

 ". . . may . . . place an inmate in administrative detention when the inmate's continued presence in the general population poses a serious threat to life, property, self, staff, other inmates or to the security or orderly running of the institution and when the inmate:

 "(1) Is pending a hearing for a violation of Bureau [of Prisons] regulations; . . ."

 On April 25, 1983 disciplinary actions were taken against Tate as the result of the inmate killing. The disciplinary sanctions imposed included sixty days in disciplinary segregation. "Disciplinary segregation" is defined by 28 C.F.R. § 541.21 as:

 ". . . the status of confinement of an inmate housed in a special housing unit in a cell either alone or with other inmates, separated from the general population. Inmates housed in disciplinary segregation have significantly fewer privileges than those housed in administrative detention."

 Upon completion of Tate's placement in disciplinary segregation, he was again placed in administrative detention.

 With respect to the permissible duration of confinement in administrative detention, § 541.22(a)(6)(i):

 "In Security Level 1 through 5 and Administrative type (exception pretrial inmates) institutions, staff within 90 days of an inmate's placement in post-disciplinary detention shall either return the inmate to the general inmate population or effect a transfer to a more suitable institution."

 Tate re-entered administrative detention, after his release from disciplinary segregation, on June 25, 1983. He is still there.

 On May 19, 1983, Tate was indicted in the New York Supreme Court of Orange County for second degree murder in the murder of his fellow inmate, one Emanuel Stewart. The state court requested that Tate be kept at the Otisville facility, within the jurisdiction of the state court, until Tate's trial on the murder indictment and the completion of sentencing.

 Tate pleaded guilty to the state charge on March 6, 1984. He was scheduled to be sentenced on April 13, 1984, but that sentencing was postponed. If it has been rescheduled, the ...


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