Brown v. Plata
May 23, 2011 11:15 AM Subscribe
Conditions in California’s overcrowded prisons are so bad that they violate the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment, the Supreme Court ruled on Monday, ordering the state to reduce its prison population by more than 30,000 inmates.
posted by Mister Fabulous (236 comments total)
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Brown v. Plata is a ruling on a three judge federal case determining that the overcrowding in California prisons violates the Eighth Amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment. The decision was a 5-4 split with two separate dissents, both described as pungent and combative. The judgement was split down ideological lines. Justice Kennedy wrote the majority opinion, with Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan joining. Justice Scalia wrote a dissent, joined by Justice Thomas, . Justice Alito also wrote a dissent, with Justice Roberts joining.
Justice Scalia went so far as to summarize his dissent from the bench, marking the second oral dissent of the current term.