United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Kevin Scott Karsjens, David Leroy Gamble, Jr., Kevin John DeVillion, Peter Gerard Lonergan, James Matthew Noyer, Sr., James John Rud, James Allen Barber, Craig Allen Bolte, Dennis Richard Steiner, Kaine Joseph Braun, Christopher John Thuringer, Kenny S. Daywitt, Bradley Wayne Foster, Brian K. Hausfeld, and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
Emily Johnson Piper, Kevin Moser, Peter Puffer, Nancy Johnston, Jannine Hébert, and Ann Zimmerman, in their official capacities, Defendants.
E. Gustafson, Esq., Karla M. Gluek, Esq., David A. Goodwin,
Esq., Raina Borrelli, Esq., and Eric S. Taubel, Esq.,
Gustafson Gluek PLLC, counsel for Plaintiffs.
H. Ikeda, Adam H. Welle, and Aaron Winter, Assistant
Attorneys General, Minnesota Attorney General's Office,
counsel for Defendants.
Donovan W. Frank United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on the parties' case status
briefs submitted in response to the Court's March 14,
2017 Order. (See Doc. Nos. 1072, 1074-79.) In that
order, the Court directed the parties to establish a briefing
schedule on four issues: (1) whether this case should remain
stayed, in whole or in part, pending further appeal; (2)
whether the other stayed cases in the District with
substantially similar claims should remain stayed pending
further appeal; (3) the next steps in this case on remaining
Phase One claims if these claims are not stayed; and (4) the
next steps in this case on Phase Two claims if these claims
are not stayed. (Doc. No. 1072.) The parties have filed
opening and response briefs on these issues. (Doc. Nos.
1074-79.) For the reasons set forth below, the Court will
stay this case in its entirety and review the propriety of
continuing the stay in ninety days.
Court has recited the factual background underlying
Plaintiffs' claims in prior orders. (See
generally Doc. No. 966.) In short, Plaintiffs' Third
Amended Complaint asserts a class action on behalf of
committed individuals residing at the Minnesota Sex Offender
Program (“MSOP”) to challenge Defendants'
implementation of the Minnesota Civil Commitment and
Treatment Act, Minnesota Statute Chapter 253D, and operation
of MSOP. (See generally Doc. No. 635.)
to the Court's November 7, 2014 Final Pretrial Order,
trial in this matter was split into two phases. (Doc. No.
647.) The Court explained:
Phase One will be comprised of the presentation of evidence
and argument on the following issues: (1) whether Minnesota
Statute Chapter 253D is unconstitutional on its face and as
applied; (2) whether the treatment provided is
constitutionally and/or statutorily infirm; (3) whether the
treatment program complies with court-ordered treatment; (4)
whether confinement is tantamount to unconstitutional
punitive detention; and (5) whether less restrictive
alternatives to confinement are constitutionally required. .
Phase Two shall be comprised of the presentation of evidence
and argument on the following issues: (1) whether confinement
conditions constitute unconstitutional restrictions on
freedom of speech, religion, and association; (2) whether
confinement procedures constitute unconstitutional searches
and seizures; (3) whether the treatment program and its
implementation constitutes a breach of contract, tortious
interference with contract, and intentional violation of
Minnesota Statute Section 253B.03(7).
(Id. at 2.) Trial proceedings in Phase One commenced
on February 9, 2015 and concluded on March 18, 2015.
(See Doc. Nos. 839; 908.) On June 17, 2015, the
Court issued its Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, and
Order, granting Plaintiffs' request for declaratory
relief with respect to Counts I and II of their Third Amended
Complaint. (Doc. No. 966 at 75.) The Court determined that it
did not need to address Counts III, V, VI, and VII
“because any remedy fashioned will address the issues
raised in the remaining Phase One Counts.”
(Id. at 65.) The Court noted that its
“determination that the MSOP and its governing civil
commitment statutes are unconstitutional concludes Phase One
of this case.” (Id. at 5.) The Court also
reiterated that “Counts VIII, IX, and X, will be tried
in the second phase of trial (‘Phase
Two').” (Id. at 76.) On October 29, 2015,
the Court issued a First Interim Relief Order directing
injunctive relief to remedy the court's findings of
unconstitutionality. (Doc. No. 1035.)
October 29, 2015, Defendants appealed the Court's June
17, 2015 and October 29, 2015 Orders. (Doc. No. 1036.) On
January 3, 2017, the Eighth Circuit issued an opinion
“revers[ing] the district court's finding of a
constitutional violation and vacat[ing] the injunctive
order.” Karsjens v. Piper, 845 F.3d 394, 411
(8th Cir. 2017). It remanded the case to this Court
“for further proceedings on the remaining claims in the
Third Amended Complaint.” Id. The Eighth
Circuit declined to rehear the case en banc. See Karsjens
v. Piper, No. 15-3485, Entry ID: 4503853 (8th Cir. Feb.
22, 2017). As noted in Plaintiffs' March ...