The court granted the motion to dismiss the § 2241 petitions for lack of jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim. The court rejected the petitioners' assertion that they were challenging the “execution” of their sentences but found instead that they raised a conditions of confinement claim not cognizable under § 2241. The court also rejected the petitioners' argument that BOP had been deliberately indifferent to their serious medical needs. Petitioners' claim under the Rehabilitation Act was also dismissed when the court found respondents had not acted in disregard of petitioners’ rights because they were disabled. Throughout the decision, the court credited BOP’s “extraordinary efforts” to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 and asserted that the lack of social distancing alone was not enough for any of these claims to succeed.
Wragg v. Ortiz, No. 20-cv-5496 (RMB), 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92033 (D.N.J. May 27, 2020)
Criminal (Federal Charges)
Class Certification, Preliminary Injunction (PI), Release
Type of Court
Federal District Court
Type of Case
Elderly, Post-Conviction Detention [jail or prison], Pre-Existing Health Conditions, Pretrial Detention [jail]
"Fraud offenses," securities fraud, drug trafficking
Compassionate Release Exhaustion Holdingsin Federal Case
Other, Exhaustion is not subject to equitable exceptions
Pre-Existing Health Conditions
Age, Asthma, Cancer, Cardiac Disease, High Cholesterol, Hypertension (high blood pressure), Kidney Disease, Other, One or more disabilities recognized by the Rehabilitation Act
Pre-Existing Health Conditions Notes
Age: 49 and 68, Asthma: severe, Cancer: Skin and thyroid
Class Action Medically Vulnerable People
Class: "all current and future FCI Fort Dix inmates over the age of 50 or who experience medical conditions that make them vulnerable to COVID-19", Subclass: "all current and future people in post-conviction custody at Fort Dix who have qualifying disabilities within the meaning of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973"
COVID-19 Positive or Symptomatic
COVID-19 in Jail Prison or Detention Center
Organization Legal Filings Templates and Decisions
American Civil Liberties Union Of New Jersey Foundation
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.