United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Western Division
SAMUEL ROBINSON, et al., on behalf of themselves and a class of others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
HAMILTON COUNTY SHERIFF JIM NEIL, Defendant.
SEEN AND AGREE: James W. Harper Assistant Hamilton County
Prosecuting Attorney Robert Brand Newman Newman & McCks
J Sears Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor Christian J.
Schaefer Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor Jerome A Kunkel
Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office Jay R.
Wampler Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office
COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT
Michael Jay O'Hara O'Hara, Taylor, Sloan &
Cassidy Marc David Mezibov Mezibov Butler COUNSEL FOR
Litkovitz, Magistrate Judge
AGREED ORDER SETTLING COUNT II AND ISSUING
J. Dlott, United States District Court Judge
parties to this litigation agree and the court finds the
issues in this case began when Sheriff Neil issued a
declaration of an emergency due to overcrowding at the
Hamilton County Justice Center as provided by Ohio Law.
Following the Declaration of the Emergency, Sheriff Neil put
in place certain changes in the facilities and operation of
the Hamilton County Justice Center to alleviate the issues
created by overcrowding.
September 28, 2017, Plaintiff Samuel Robinson filed a suit
alleging that the changes made by Sheriff Neil were
inadequate to relieve overcrowding and that the Hamilton
County Justice Center continues to be overcrowded as
prohibited by the Eighth Amendment to the United States
Constitution. Sheriff Neil denies the claims of Plaintiff
Robinson and the additional Plaintiffs who have been added to
the litigation by two Amended Complaints.
Hamilton County Justice Center was subject to a prior consent
decree that expired a decade before this litigation began.
Among other things, the prior Consent Decree resulted in the
use by Sheriff Neil of the National Institute of Corrections
(NIC) classification system and various early release
policies to prevent constitutionally prohibited overcrowding
at the Hamilton County Justice Center.
D. As a
result of the 2008 recession, an additional jail facility in
Hamilton County was closed and additional early release
policies were established to prevent constitutionally
deficient overcrowding at the Hamilton County Justice Center.
of these early release policies are attached hereto as
Exhibits 1 through 7.
While most of these early release policies have been
authorized by Ohio courts, others were not. Recently the Ohio
First District Court of Appeals held that one of these early
release policies violated Ohio law. The most effective of
these early release policies employed by Sheriff Neil,
"Pre-trial Release, " appears to violate Ohio Law.
Essentially, this program releases inmates for whom bonds are
set by Judges of the Hamilton County Courts who have not, or
are unable, to post those bonds.
There are two populations housed in the Hamilton County
Justice Center. "Detention Inmates" are inmates who
have been arrested, delivered to the Intake area of the
Hamilton County Justice Center, and held pending the Initial
Appearance before a Judge of the Hamilton County Municipal
Court. The Initial Appearance occurs within two days of the
inmate's arrest. "Population Inmates" are
inmates serving a sentence or held in lieu of a bond being
posted for their release. Population Inmates are held for
longer periods of time, generally until their sentences
expire or the trial court proceedings are completed.
Sheriff Neil has used temporary beds, called "Boats,
" which sit on the floor in common areas of the Hamilton
County Justice Center when the number of inmates exceeds the
number of available beds in cells as determined by
application of the NIC classification system to the current
population. The Parties' expectation is that the use of
Boats, other than use associated with unusual circumstances
such as an arrest occasioned by a mass civil unrest scenario,
would be reduced or eliminated from the day to day operations
of the Justice Center given plans to expand the physical
capacity of the Justice Center over the next two-year period.
The Parties agree that the use of Boats in the day to day