The Department of Justice has announced a civil rights investigation into the conditions facing inmates in Georgia’s prison system. Each of the three U.S. Attorney’s Offices in Georgia, for the Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts, are involved in the statewide investigation along with the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ. They will also be working with the State of Georgia and its Department of Corrections to determine whether inmates’ rights have been violated due to the conditions of their confinement.
The conditions at Georgia prisons have been widely criticized for a long time, as reported here, here, and here. Nearly every aspect of the Georgia prison system has been criticized, including allegations of officer corruption, widespread smuggling of contraband, unsanitary conditions, excessive use of solitary confinement, and assaults on inmates by other inmates and staff.
The investigation in this case will seek to answer whether these conditions amounted to a violation of inmates’ constitutional rights. The investigation will also focus on whether prisoners are given “reasonable protection” from other inmates and staff and whether the state prison system provides LBGT and intersex prisoners with protection from sexual abuse by other inmates and prison staff.
Click here to read the press release.