The court denied petitioner's habeas petition and motion for a TRO. Petitioner was an undocumented immigrant awaiting a decision on removal and requested release from the detention facility on the basis that his underlying health conditions (such as high blood-pressure, minor back pain, trouble breathing, light-headedness) and the risk of catching Covid-19 while in confinement amounted to deliberate indifference or punitive detention under the Due Process Clause. The court ruled against him on the basis that "the Government has a legitimate interest in securing aliens during their removal proceedings" since he was deemed a flight risk and because "the conditions to which Petitioner is subject are not excessive in relation to that interest and are neither arbitrary nor purposeless." On the second point, the court noted steps the facility had taken to mitigate the spread of Covid-19 such as increased frequency of cleaning, reducing operations below 50% of capacity, and enforcing social distancing.
Leocadio L. L. v. Tsoukaris, No. CV 20-4605 (SDW), 2020 WL 2764819 (D.N.J. May 28, 2020)
Release, Temporary Restraining Order (TRO)
Type of Court
Federal District Court
Type of Case
Elderly, Immigrant Detention, Post-Conviction Detention [jail or prison], Pre-Existing Health Conditions
Compassionate Release Case
Case Tracking Number
MORE CASE INFORMATION
Motions Partially Granted
Place of Incarceration
Name of Facility
Elizabeth Contract Detention Facility
Eighth Amendment - Deliberate Indifference, Substantive Due Process - Deliberate Indifference (both 14th and 5th Amendments), Substantive Due Process - Punitive Detention (both 14th and 5th Amendments)
BMI not mentioned; high blood pressure not confirmed
COVID-19 Positive or Symptomatic
COVID-19 in Jail Prison or Detention Center
Crowdsourced legal documents from around the country related to COVID-19 and incarceration, organized, collected, and summarized for public defenders, litigators, and other advocates. Created and managed by Bronx Defenders, Columbia Law School’s Center for Institutional and Social Change, UCLA Law COVID-19 Behind Bars Data Project, and Zealous. Mostly federal court opinions, but now expanding to states and legal filings, declarations, and exhibits.
This resource is designed to help lawyers, advocates, researchers, journalists, and others interested in challenging, remedying, or drawing attention to the grave risk that Covid-19 poses to individuals who are detained.