Nos. 21-15839 22-15345.

81 F.4th 863 (2023)

Todd Lewis ASHKER; Danny Troxell; George Ruiz; Jeffrey Anthony Franklin; George Franco; Gabriel Ralph Reyes; Richard K. Johnson; Paul A. Redd, Jr.; Luis Esquivel; Ronnie N. Dewberry, Plaintiffs-Appellees, v. Gavin NEWSOM, Governor of the State of California; Matthew Cate; Anthony Chaus, Chief, Office of Correctional Safety, CDCR; Greg Lewis, Warden, Defendants-Appellants.

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.

Filed August 24, 2023.

Attorney(s) appearing for the Case

Sarah M. Brattin (argued), Deputy Attorney General; Monica N. Anderson , Senior Assistant Attorney General; Rob Bonta , California Attorney General; California Attorney General's Office, Sacramento, California; Jeffrey T. Fisher , and Neah Huynh , Supervising Deputy Attorneys General; Cassandra J. Shryock (argued), Deputy Attorney General; California Attorney General's Office, San Francisco, California; for Defendants-Appellants.

Jules Lobel (argued), Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Carmen E. Bremer (argued), Bremer Law Group PLLC, Seattle, Washington; Rachel A. Meeropol , American Civil Liberties Union, Criminal Law Reform Project, New York, New York; Samuel Miller , Center for Constitutional Rights, New York, New York; Charles F.A. Carbone , Law Offices of Charles Carbone, San Francisco, California; Matthew D. Strugar , Law Office of Matthew Strugar, Los Angeles, California; Anne M. Cappella , Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP, Redwood Shores , California; Anne Butterfield Weills , Siegel Yee & Brunner, Oakland, California; Caitlin Sandley , Center for Constitutional Rights, Birmingham, Alabama; Baher Azmy , Center for Constitutional Rights, New York, New York; for Plaintiffs-Appellees.

Donald Specter , Margot Mendelson , and Patrick Booth , Prison Law Office, Berkeley, California, for Amici Curiae Former Corrections Officials.

Paula Mitchell , The Project for the Innocent at Loyola Law School, Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California; Linda Starr , The Northern California Innocence Project, Santa Clara University School of Law, Santa Clara, California; Anton Robinson and Faith Barksdale , The Innocence Project Inc., New York, New York; Alexander Simpson , The California Innocence Project, California Western School of Law, San Diego, California; for Amici Curiae The California Innocence Project, The Innocence Project, The Northern California Innocence Project, and The Project for the Innocent at Loyola Law School.

Concurrence by Judge R. Nelson.


A settlement agreement generally ends a legal dispute. Here, it was just the beginning. In August 2015, the State of California settled a dispute with a plaintiff class of inmates over alleged constitutional violations. Eight years later, the dispute continues...

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