U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson

 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The state of Alabama told a federal judge that it is optimistic that it can adequately staff state prisons by a 2022 deadline despite slow progress in hiring. 

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson had asked the state to explain how it planned to meet the court order to add about 2,000 officers in the next two years. Thompson said the state had only added about 100 officers over the last nine months and had a net loss in supervisors.

Alabama's near-total abortion ban will remain blocked by a federal judge.  

The attorney general's office confirmed the state is not appealing the October injunction issued by U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson. 

The injunction prevented the ban from taking effect Nov. 15 while Thompson hears a lawsuit challenging the ban as unconstitutional.

istockphoto

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A federal judge blocked an Alabama abortion ban Tuesday that would have made the procedure a felony at any stage of pregnancy in almost all cases.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson issued a preliminary injunction blocking Alabama from enforcing the law, which would have called for a sentence of 10 years to life in prison for the abortion provider with no exceptions for rape or incest.

abortion rally
Butch Dill / AP

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A federal judge on Friday ordered Alabama to pay $675,964 to lawyers for abortion clinics who challenged the state's attempt to ban the most common second trimester abortion procedure.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson handed down the order after striking down the 2016 law. Alabama is responsible for the plaintiffs' legal fees after the law was ruled unconstitutional.

Prison Reform: Health Care in Alabama's Prisons

Apr 29, 2019
segregation cell
SPLC

Alabama’s prison system has been in the news a lot this year, and not for good reasons. Violence, inmate riots, allegations of mismanagement and corruption and a failed prison building plan in the state legislature have all pointed out plenty of problems.

The Alabama Public Radio news team spent several months in a national award-winning effort examining what happens as people go into the state’s prison system and what happens when they come out.

A federal judge says he will rule next week on a request to intervene after a rash of suicides in Alabama prisons.  

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson on Thursday said he will issue an order next week.

Attorneys for prisoners asked Thompson to intervene after 15 inmates killed themselves within 15 months. They argued the state is not doing enough to prevent suicides and asked Thompson to order changes in how inmates are monitored and to restrict the use of solitary confinement.

Holman Prison Less Than 40% Staffed

Dec 19, 2018
Alabama death row
EJI

As Alabama grapples with a major shortage of correctional workers, more than 60 percent of the required staff positions at the overcrowded, violence-plagued prison which houses the state's death chamber are currently unfilled.

The Montgomery Advertiser reported Tuesday that maximum-security Holman prison, where authorities are investigating a string of assaults and one homicide this month, currently employs 72 security staff members of the 195 it needs to cover all its shifts.

An Alabama prison official testified in federal court yesterday that a now-dead prisoner was placed on mental health observation, rather than suicide watch, despite a previous attempt to kill himself.

Warden Cynthia Stewart of Holman Correctional Facility near Atmore also testified that the inmate did not receive wellness checks as frequently as a court order demanded.

AL Senate Passes General Fund Budget

Feb 21, 2018

The Alabama Senate has approved a state general fund budget that gives additional money to the state prison system.

That’s part of an effort to comply with a court order to overhaul the health and mental health care provided to inmates. Last summer, U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson ruled that the prison mental health system was “horrendously inadequate” and that changes had to be made.

 A federal judge has sentenced former Alabama House Majority Leader Representative Micky Hammon to three months in prison for felony mail fraud.  

 U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson on Thursday rebuffed a prosecution recommendation for Hammon to spend no time behind bars.

A federal judge presiding in a lawsuit involving mental health treatment in Alabama prisons is giving officials until Friday to move mentally ill inmates who've been held too long in single-person cells. 

 

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson issued the order Thursday following a hearing where inmate attorneys argued that mentally ill prisoners are being held too long in solitary.

Prison Mental Health Deadline Approaches

Aug 29, 2017

The deadline is looming for Alabama’s correctional officials to tell a federal judge how they plan to overhaul mental health care in state prisons.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson has scheduled a status conference for September 7 to get an update on the mediation between the state of Alabama and lawyers representing Alabama inmates.

Tutwiler Prison
Dave Martin / AP

The Alabama Department of Corrections has agreed to put new suicide prevention measures in place after an inmate killed himself days after testifying on alleged inadequate mental health care in state prisons.

Prison Health Trial Begins Today

Dec 5, 2016

Testimony is set to begin today in a massive lawsuit alleging inmates in Alabama’s prisons aren’t receiving the minimum level of health care guaranteed by the Constitution.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson is set to begin hearing the non-jury, class-action lawsuit later today. It was originally filed by a group of inmates against the Alabama Department of Corrections back in 2014.

Prison Mental Health Lawsuit Earns Class-Action Status

Nov 28, 2016
Myron Thompson
Lloyd Gallman / Montgomery Advertiser

Mentally ill inmates held in Alabama’s prisons may soon be receiving better care thanks to a federal court.

Late last week, U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson awarded class action status to a lawsuit on behalf of prisoners allegedly receiving inadequate medical care from the Alabama Department of Corrections. That means whatever decision is reached will extend not just to the prisoners named in the lawsuit, but all of the nearly 25,000 prisoners currently incarcerated in Alabama Department of Corrections facilities.

A federal judge has temporarily blocked the enforcement of new state laws banning abortion clinics near schools and outlawing a commonly used second trimester abortion procedure.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson issued an order yesterday delaying enforcement of the laws that were set to take effect Aug. 1. Thompson scheduled an Oct. 4 hearing on a request from abortion providers to permanently block the laws.

Lawyers for Alabama abortion providers have asked a federal judge to block new state laws that ban abortion clinics near schools as well as a commonly-used second trimester abortion procedure.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson scheduled a telephone conference on the request for a temporary restraining order. Unless blocked by federal court, the new laws will go into effect August 1.

Myron Thompson
Alex AuBuchon / APR

A Mobile city councilman is in stable condition today after he was shot during a robbery in South Africa this weekend.

City Councilman C.J. Small owns and operates Small’s Mortuary and Cremation Services in Mobile. He was in Johannesburg attending the South African Funeral Director and Morticians Association Convention. At around noon Johannesburg time, the tour bus Small was riding was ambushed and several patrons were robbed. Small was shot in the face during the incident, and some other passengers were injured.