Prison Reform: Ruiz v. Estelle (continued)
In spite of the final judgment agreed to by the parties in 1992, Judge Justice continued to receive complaints from prisoners regarding prison conditions.
- Complaint from Ray Flores to William Wayne Justice, July 10, 1993.
- Complaint from Bob Moore to William Wayne Justice, February 23, 1994.
- Complaint from Victor Remi Herbert to William Wayne Justice, May 24, 1994.
- Complaint from Edward Clarence Gipson to William Wayne Justice, April 18, 1994.
- Complaint from Marvin L. Brown to William Wayne Justice, April 12, 1995.
- Complaint from Brian Keith Walker to William Wayne Justice, March 16, 1994.
In March 1996, the Texas Department of Corrections filed a motion to vacate the final judgment.
T.D.C. Huntsville Unit
- Motion to Vacate Final Judgment, March 25, 1996.
- Letter from W. David Arnold to William Wayne Justice, March 30, 1996.
- Letter from William Wayne Justice to Attorney General Janet Reno, April 15, 1996.
- Order appointing counsel for plaintiffs, May 31, 1996.
- Plaintiffs’ Memorandum in Opposition to Motion to Vacate Final Judgment, June 20, 1996.
Although Judge Justice took senior status in 1998, he directed the clerk of court that he would continue to handle the Ruiz litigation. At the time, plaintiffs were complying with a discovery order.
- Letter from William Wayne Justice to Clerk of Court Michael Milby, May 29, 1998.
- Order denying defendants’ Motion to Vacate Discovery Order, June 21, 1998.
A hearing on the motion to vacate the consent decree was held in late January 1999. Although he noted that the prison system had made substantial improvements since the litigation began, Judge Justice found that inmates’ constitutional rights were still being violated in regard to conditions of deprivation in administrative segregation units, a lack of reasonable safety for inmates, and excessive use of force by TDC officials.
The state appealed Judge Justice’s ruling. Finding the Prison Litigation Reform Act constitutional, the 5th Circuit remanded the case to the district court.
Judge Justice maintained oversight of the state prison system until 2002.