Lawsuit faults jail conditions

Published May 5, 1996|Updated Sep. 16, 2005

Conditions at the Nassau County jail "fall beneath the standards of human decency," according to a class-action lawsuit filed in federal court in Jacksonville.

Jacksonville lawyers Bill Sheppard and Dan Smith filed the lawsuit on Friday against Nassau County on behalf of all the inmates at the jail, asking that conditions at the facility be corrected. The action also seeks unspecified damages, costs and attorneys fees from Nassau County.

In the past several years, the Florida Department of Corrections has made several complaints concerning overcrowding and maintenance problems, including a leaky roof. Last year, the Nassau County jail averaged 115 inmates daily for much of the year.

While Nassau County commissioners have discussed chronic overcrowding conditions at the 103-bed jail, they have opted for more study before enlarging the facility.

The only named plaintiffs in the class-action lawsuit are inmates Ricky Darby, Nathaniel Green and James Plyler.

_ Compiled from Associated Press reports