7th charges. Before proceeding, the Committee determined that
he had not received adequate advance notice of the pendency of
the two riot reports. Accordingly, he was provided with copies
of the allegations and was held in a transit cell for one day.
The Committee conducted its hearing on October 16, 1973, only
after Williams had written notice of the charges contained in
the five violation reports for at least twenty-four hours. At
no time was Plaintiff advised of the precise prison
regulations allegedly violated or of any right to be
represented by counsel at the hearing.
When he appeared before the Committee, Williams denied all
the allegations. The Committee considered his denial and found
against him, ordering him to fifteen days in isolation and
referring him to the Institutional Assignment Committee (IAC)
for indefinite administrative segregation.
Plaintiff was brought before the IAC on October 23, 1973,
without advance notice of the exact time and date of the
hearing. Again, Williams was not informed of the regulations
alleged violated and he was not advised that he could be
represented by counsel.
The IAC reviewed the evidence before it, including Williams'
continued denial of wrongdoing, and found that his presence in
the general prison population was a source of danger to the
safety and security of the Stateville employees and inmates.
As a result, Plaintiff was assigned to indefinite
Administrative Segregation, where he is presently confined.
On these facts, Plaintiff claims that his due process
guarantees under United States ex rel. Miller v. Twomey,
supra, have been violated. See also Gagnon, supra; Morrissey,
supra. First, Williams alleges that his version of the disputed
facts could only be effectively and fairly presented by a
trained advocate, particularly since any exculpating statement
could be used against him in a criminal prosecution. Moreover,
he contends that he was given inadequate and untimely notice of
the hearings. Finally, Williams maintains that he was not
informed of his right to request that witnesses be called and
interviewed on his behalf.
Each issue will be examined separately.
C. Right to Counsel
Succinctly stated, Williams argues that Miller, Gagnon, and
Morrissey grant inmates an absolute right to representation by
counsel at in-prison disciplinary hearings where the facts of
the alleged wrongdoing are complicated and contested. This
position lacks merit.
In Miller, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals analyzed the
various interacting public and private interests present at
in-prison disciplinary hearings. In a well-considered opinion,
the Court recognized that the fourteenth amendment to the
federal constitution mandates the observance of certain
procedural safeguards at these proceedings and held that these
. . [adequate] advance written notice, a
dignified hearing in which the accused may be
heard, an opportunity to request that other
witnesses be called or interviewed, and an
impartial decision maker.
479 F.2d at 716. Contrary to Plaintiff's claims, then, the
right to counsel is not among the due process minima that must
be afforded accused prisoners under the Miller standards. In
fact, the Court observed that it is "doubtful" whether due
process requires legal representation in these circumstances.
479 F.2d at 715-716, n. 31.