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DC prisoner lawsuit agreement gets preliminary OK

Thursday - 11/14/2013, 8:00pm  ET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A federal judge has given preliminary approval to an agreement settling a class-action lawsuit over a D.C. law that banned inmates' release from the city's jail during the late evening and early morning hours.

Former D.C. Jail inmates sued in 2006, saying the law kept them in jail longer than necessary. The inmates also sued over improper strip searches. The problems were largely fixed by 2008.

The D.C. Attorney General's office announced the settlement Thursday. Officials said it provides a maximum total of $2.9 million to former inmates, who would receive payments based on the length of their overdetention and whether they were strip searched. Another $2 million will go to attorneys' fees. Other expenses bring the total potential settlement to $6.2 million.

A hearing will be held March 17.


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