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CHAPMAN v. PICKETT

April 18, 1980

EDWARD JOSEPH X. CHAPMAN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
GEORGE PICKETT ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Baker, District Judge.

JUDGMENT

This is a civil rights action arising under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 concerning the First and Eighth Amendment rights of a Black Muslim prisoner who was placed in segregation for some 91/2 months following his refusal on religious grounds to handle pork during a kitchen clean-up detail.

The case is here on its second remand. Chapman v. Pickett, 586 F.2d 22 (7th Cir. 1978) (Chapman II); Chapman v. Kleindienst, 507 F.2d 1246 (7th Cir. 1974) (Chapman I).

FACTS

The facts of the case to this point are set forth in Chapman II:

  Edward Joseph X. Chapman was a prisoner in the
  federal penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas,
  when, on October 4, 1972, he was transferred to
  the Marion, Illinois, penitentiary. On October 9
  Chapman was assigned to the kitchen detail, which
  assignment included transporting food carts and
  clearing food off of them. When Chapman
  discovered that the food trays in the carts
  contained pork, he went to his supervisor,
  defendant J.E. Brown, and informed him that
  because of the beliefs of his Black Muslim faith,
  he could not handle the pork on the trays.
  According to his testimony at trial, Brown then
  offered Chapman the use of either gloves or
  various kitchen utensils to enable him to
  complete the task. While Chapman at trial denied
  that he was offered these, he did acknowledge
  that, regardless of such an offer, he would still
  have refused to do the work, since even indirect
  touching was forbidden. Brown then advised
  Chapman that he would be forced to write a
  disciplinary report on Chapman if the task were
  not performed. Chapman responded by saying that
  the last man who had written a report on him
  concerning an incident of this nature had been
  "blown out of an oven" at Leavenworth just two
  months previously.
    After the incident Brown filed a report
  charging Chapman with violating Prison Code § 303,
  "Failing to perform work as instructed by a
  supervisor." His report also mentioned the
  Leavenworth remark. An investigative report,
  completed the day of the incident by another
  official and sent to the prison's Adjustment
  Committee, stated that "Chapman had a very good
  attitude." It noted that "apparently through
  Chapman's efforts someone had removed the pork from
  the cart and Chapman had finished cleaning the
  cart."
    On October 11 the Adjustment Committee, which
  included defendants Jack Culley, Earl Buzzard,
  and E.M. Cage, met to consider Brown's report.
  Chapman was present and, upon having the report
  read to him admitted the facts of the incident,
  again explaining that his refusal was the result
  of his Black Muslim beliefs. The Committee
  decided to punish Chapman by placing him in the
  segregation unit for an indeterminate term.

586 F.2d at 24.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

The procedural history of the case is somewhat lengthy. Chapman brought suit for injunctive and declaratory relief and for damages alleging (1) violation of his First Amendment right to free exercise of religion, (2) denial of procedural due process at the disciplinary hearing which preceded his segregation, and (3) cruel and unusual punishment in violation of the Eighth Amendment by assignment to segregation for over nine months. In the first trial, the district court, after hearing testimony from two witnesses, refused to hear further evidence. Thereafter, the court entered judgment for the defendants on the grounds that Chapman had failed to prove any of the allegations in his complaint and that his claim for a mandatory injunction was moot since he had already been released from segregation.

On appeal, the Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of a mandatory injunction ordering release but reversed the dismissal of the claims for damages and for declaratory and prohibitive injunctive relief as well as "further appropriate relief, including the expurgation of his prison record." 507 F.2d at 1249. The reviewing court further held (1) that the facts made out a prima facie case of a First Amendment violation, (2) that the trial court had erred in terminating testimony, (3) that the plaintiff had not been denied procedural due process. The appellate court made no rulings on the Eighth Amendment claim due to the inadequacy of the record. The case was remanded for a new trial.

At retrial, the district court never reached the merits of plaintiff's First Amendment claim. The court found that the defendants had a qualified official immunity from liability for damages under the First Amendment and that the plaintiff's request for injunctive and declaratory relief was mooted by his release on parole and by the new policy adopted by the Federal Bureau of Prisons exempting Black Muslims from handling pork. The trial court also found that the plaintiff's confinement was disproportionate to his offense after May 5, 1973, and violated the Eighth Amendment, but ruled that the plaintiff was not entitled to money damages because he had failed to prove actual damages.

  On appeal the second time, the Court of Appeals affirmed the
district court's finding of qualified immunity on the First
Amendment issue. It also affirmed the district court's finding
that the plaintiff's request for declaratory and injunctive
relief against future infringement of his religious beliefs
was moot, but ruled that a request for an injunction against
future use of the plaintiff's punishment record was not moot.
The appellate court also affirmed the district court's finding
of an Eighth Amendment violation, but reversed the ruling as
to the date of the violation and the plaintiff's entitlement
to damages. The case was again remanded.
  The issues remanded by the Court of Appeals are:

(1) Whether Chapman's First Amendment right to free exercise of religion was violated and, if so, whether the record of his punishment should be expunged.

(2) The date the Eighth Amendment violation began.

(3) What damages Chapman is entitled to receive as a result of the Eighth Amendment violation.

On January 25, 1980, this court conducted an evidentiary hearing to determine the additional facts necessary to carry out the Court of Appeals' mandate. From the testimony presented, the court makes the following additional findings:

(1) On October 11, 1972, Chapman was initially assigned to "short-term segregation" status, where he remained for some 2 to 3 months before being reassigned to "long-term segregation" or "control" status.

(2) Chapman was returned to "short-term segregation" status in June, 1973, and returned to the general prison ...


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