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WILLIAMS v. LEHIGH DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS
November 22, 1999
ANTHONY M. WILLIAMS, PLAINTIFF,
LEHIGH DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Katz, Senior District Judge.
Before the court is defendants' motion for summary judgment.
Because plaintiff has failed to establish a genuine issue of
material fact on any of his claims regarding unconstitutional
conditions of confinement, the court will grant the motion.
I. Background and Allegations
Plaintiff Anthony Williams' pro se complaint alleges
unconstitutional conditions of confinement in the administrative
segregation and disciplinary segregation units at Lehigh County
Prison. Named defendants are the Lehigh County Department of
Corrections, Warden Edward Sweeney, and Director Richard Klotz.
Although plaintiff designated this complaint as a class action,
the court denied a motion seeking class certification. See
Order of September 9, 1998.
According to the documents submitted by the defendants,
disciplinary segregation was "established to house inmates who
have violated one or more institutional rules, to correct their
behavior and to deter a future recurrence." See Def. Ex. B.
Inmates in disciplinary segregation have more significant
restrictions on their actions than do general population
prisoners. In contrast, administrative segregation was
established "to ensure the safety of inmates so-classified,"
staff, and other inmates and "shall not be punitive in nature."
See Def. Ex. C.*fn1 Inmates in administrative segregation are
to be provided "generally equal living conditions and privileges
of the general population except their freedom of movement" or
where security issues warrant otherwise. Id. Mr. Williams was
never on administrative segregation, but he spent a great deal of
time in disciplinary segregation for a variety of different
infractions of prison regulations. See Def. Ex. A. Mr. Williams
is no longer housed at the Lehigh County Prison — as of October
8, 1998, he was transferred to SCI Graterford. See Def. Ex. A ¶
14 (Aff. of Edward Sweeney).
Mr. Williams asserts that the following seven aspects of the
segregated units violated the Eighth Amendment:
1. Placement on disciplinary segregation limits
direct access to the prison law library; inmates
must fill out a request form to acquire legal
2. Disciplinary segregation inmates receive
inadequate clothing and footwear for winter
3. The food provided to inmates in disciplinary and
administrative segregation is inadequate.
4. The housing of mentally ill inmates with other
inmates in disciplinary segregation creates an
unacceptably high level of noise.
5. The guards tour the disciplinary segregation unit
infrequently, creating safety risks and making it
difficult for inmates to receive medical
6. Disciplinary segregation inmates are deprived of
mental stimulation because they are barred from
having any reading material except religious books.
7. Disciplinary segregation inmates who are
designated as aggressive are restricted to only two
showers a week and two shaves a week and are forced
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