Sunday, March 04, 2018

Recent Prisoner Free Exercise Cases

In Abdul-Aziz v. Lanigan, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 30258 (D NJ, Feb. 26, 2018), a New Jersey federal district court, while dismissing some claims, allowed Muslim inmates to move ahead with a claim for prospective injunctive relief as to daily Halal meals.

In Fisher v. Schweitzer, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33166 (SD OH, March 1, 2018), an Ohio federal district court adopted a magistrate's recommendation (2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33457, Jan. 2, 2018) and dismissed an inmate's complaint that the warden stopped him from attending church as a way of punishing him for being the victim of an assault.

In Thomas v. Waugh, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33541 (ND NY, Feb. 28, 2018), a New York federal magistrate judge recommended allowing plaintiff, an African American of the Jewish-Hebrew faith, to proceed with his 1st Amendment free exercise claim growing out of the refusal by authorities to allow him to wear a tam as an alternative form of Jewish head covering.

In Moore v. Jay, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 34078 (WD OK, March 2, 2018),an Oklahoma federal district court refused at this point to dismiss a suit by a Muslim inmate who alleged that while he agreed to accept kosher food in place of halal food, he was intentionally deceived about the kosher status of the meals he was served.