In Utt v. Brown, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131347 (ED NC, Sept. 29, 2015), a North Carolina federal district court permitted a Wiccan inmate to move ahead with his free exercise claims regarding corporate worship, feast participation, and practice of his religion outside of the areas specifically designated for religious worship. The case was referred for a settlement conference.
In Hatcher v. Roller, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131192 (ED TN, Sept. 28, 2015), a Tennessee federal district court dismissed an inmate’s request for a place of solitary and silence in the prison for him to pray to his God “alone and in peace.”
In Goode v. Farrell, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132208 (ED PA, Sept. 30, 2015), a Pennsylvania federal district court dismissed a complaint by a pre-trial detainee seeking to stop officials from using space previously designated for Muslim religious services as a clothing storage space.
In Thomas v. Waugh, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132308 (ND NY, Sept. 30, 2015), a New York federal district court adopted a magistrate’s recommendations (2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 133859, July 24, 2015) and allowed a Jewish inmate to move ahead with his complaint that he was barred from wearing a larger head covering than the typical Jewish yarmulke. He claims the standard-size yarmulke will not fit over his hair.
In Suggs v. Maxymillian, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 132300 (ND NY, Sept. 30, 2015), a New York federal district court adopted a magistrate’s recommendations (2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 133443, Sept. 14, 2015) and allowed Sexual Offender Treatment Program detainees to move forward on claims by a Muslim and by a follower of Neopaganism that they face limitations on their ability to practice their religions and gain access to appropriate clergy.
In Lopez v. Cipolini, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 133799 (SD NY, Sept. 30, 2015), a New York federal district court held that an inmate adequately stated an equal protection claim in her complaint that a corrections official prevented her from attending the two religious services because of her hair and because of her sexuality. The court dismissed plaintiff’s free exercise claim without prejudice.