The ACLU of Montana filed an amicus brief in September 2014 in support of the defendant in this case involving a prisoner with mental illness who was transferred from the Montana State Hospital to a county jail where he was held in solitary confinement for five months, deprived of his medication and subjected to a harsh “behavior modification program” with no bed or toilet. R.S.A., who was charged with stealing a box of tools from a Missoula hardware store, was subjected to unconstitutional pre-trial, pre-conviction punishment without due process of law. He was denied his right to protest his removal from the Montana State Hospital and transfer to county jail. The conditions he was subjected to while in jail prompted repeated self-destructive behavior, including a nearly successful attempt to chew through his own artery.


Jim Taylor (ACLU)

Pro Bono Law Firm(s)

Mark Stermitz (Crowley Fleck, Missoula)

Date filed

September 8, 2014


Supreme Court of the State of Montana



Case number

DA 13-0020