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Wed September 18, 2013
NM Prison 'Strip And Straddle' Lawsuit Eyed
State correctional officials and nearly 500 former and current inmates have reached a settlement agreement that would pay out $750,000 to inmates allegedly forced to strip down and sit front to back for long periods.
The Albuquerque Journal report that court documents show that the agreement was reached after several months of negotiations and two mediations.
The proposed agreement, which a judge still has to approve, also calls for a change in the so-called "controlled seating" policy. That's a practice that would mandate a 1-foot-wide gap between inmates if they're told to sit and straddle each other in times of unrest or emergency.
The class-action lawsuit was filed in 2011 after inmates claimed they were subjected to the practice in 2009 and 2010 at the Los Lunas Correctional Facility.
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