Royce Lamberth Refers DC Jail to DOJ for Civil Rights Investigation

Judge Royce Lamberth, a 78-year old Reagan appointee with a libertarian streak, just held the Warden and the Director for the DC Jail in civil contempt for not providing the medical records of Christopher Worrell in timely fashion as he ordered. He further found that DC Jail had abridged the civil rights of Worrell and referred the jail to Merrick Garland for investigation for general civil rights violations.

Worrell’s medical issues — both pre-existing non-Hodgkins lymphoma and a hand he broke while in jail — have been pending for some time. For a time (back when John Pierce was his lawyer), Worrell was himself delaying treatment by refusing to go to medical appointments. The government had been regularly submitting Worrell’s medical records to the docket. Last week, Judge Lamberth ordered the jail to include the doctor’s notes from a hand specialist who reviewed Worrell’s hand injury ASAP.

According to their claims today, they recognized these notes weren’t in the electronic file on Tuesday morning, and scanned them in before Lamberth ordered a show cause hearing (they did not, however, offer to share metadata proving that point). Lamberth didn’t buy that — and was already steaming about DC Jail’s decision to limit how many video conference rooms are available (which has made it almost impossible to schedule last minute hearings).

In judging that DOC had violated Worrell’s civil rights, Lamberth raised the possibility that he was treated this way because he’s a Jan 6 defendant. I’m not sure there’s any evidence to support that.

It’s still too early to understand what will happen as a result of this, both to Worrell’s case, and to the January 6 investigation generally. There’s not much evidence that this treatment is because these guys are Jan 6 defendants. But neither is there any evidence that the jail has done what it has needed to do to respond to the increased demands created by the January 6 investigation.

Hopefully, at the very least, this will serve as a wakeup call that the DC Jail needs to do better.

20 replies
  1. Mojo Risin' says:

    The fact that Pierce is able to get new clients as of this week shows what a generalized farce the federal system has become. Things like Amy Covid Barrett taking MeK money are one form of rot, things like Pierce being able to keep representing marks to a transparent criminal con are another form of disgrace that verges on parody.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      That John Pierce can still sign up new clients, despite his litany of troubles, has nothing to do with “the federal system.” It has to do with PT Barnum’s observation that a suckers are born every minute, and there’s always a predator around who will take every dime they have.

      • Mojo Risin' says:

        It has everything to do with it; the various AUSAs, clerks and judges all play along with the act, the same way the system as a whole plays along with Mitch’s barely qualified judges, Ginni Thomas organizing bus rides of seditionists, the multiple W-era DoJ figures that made Epstein/Kirkland function as a settlement for a dozen years, etc. It is all the same rotten culture.

        • P J Evans says:

          As long as Pierce is a member of the bar in good standing, in DC or wherever, the courts won’t do anything as long as he isn’t obviously off his rocker, misadvising his clients, or publicly engaged in criminal activity.
          Got any *useful* suggestions?

          • Mojo Risin' says:

            “Deport everyone in FedSoc” is a very useful suggestion in a pure vacuum where implementation was automatic and frictionless. The problem is the agglomeration of social conventions, institutions and assumptions that limits these obvious solutions.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          No, it does not. As for admitted lawyers being able to take on clients, perhaps your disgust is with the minimal standards enforced by state bar associations rather than “the federal system.” One could make the same argument regarding medical doctors and accountants. If your disgust concerns the execrable, anti-constitutional politics of the right, that’s about the political, not “the federal system.” And, yes, the left and the largely miserable MSM allow the right a free pass concerning their entirely obstructive and destructive behavior.

          • Mojo Risin' says:

            My disgust concerns the culture itself, a culture that defends itself by selectively ignoring outrages previous generations would never have allowed. Barr gloating behind closed doors to his Opus Dei gang at Notre Dame just two months after murdering Epstein, spouting his Torquemada bullshit while FIVE justices on the bench tacitly agree with him… no other great power on Earth would tolerate this kind of subversion from within the judiciary for a moment. We just tolerate it because we’re a boiled frog, cooked by greasy mob chef Leonard Leo.

            [FYI – you’ve dropped 10 comments inside one hour and four minutes with a history of only 9 approved comments under two usernames since 03-OCT-2021 triggering a throttle. Slow your roll. /~Rayne]

          • Mojo Risin' says:

            “the left and the largely miserable MSM allow the right a free pas” that’s ridiculous, there is no “left” in DC politics nor NY media. The US has an ultra-right Christo-nationalist party and a center-right Wall Street party. Please stay in reality when discussing these things, the reality where Iron Dome sailed through the House 420-9 a few weeks ago.

        • bmaz says:

          Hi Mojo Risin (excellent screen name by the way), that is complete uninformed bullshit. I am sure it feels good to blow shit out of your rear, but the actual practice of federal criminal law is quite a bit more complicated.

          • Mojo Risin' says:

            Are you sure ALL of it is bullshit? You don’t think the FedSoc/OpusDei types were a little less brazen before they had 5/9? You really think someone like McFadden wouldn’t have recused himself quickly and quietly from the Benton case in the kind of climate we had 15 years ago, when we still put ABA-approved judges on the bench that had at least experienced parking tickets as judges in previous experience?

            • bmaz says:

              Yes. But, hey, I just do this for a living. You are just blowing shit on the internet. And, by the way, the ABA is not worth squat and never were.

              Also, too, quit DDoSing our threads. This is not your personal playground.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              ABA approval is a limp standard (which makes Trump’s nominees inability to earn it surprising). With regard to judges, it usually designates the candidate as a member of the high corporate church. A progressive administration would demand more than an Ivy League education and a decade or two at a white shoe firm, working for corporate clients.

      • Mojo Risin' says:

        We can’t visualize what it would look like to have a federal bar that would prevent someone like Pierce from practicing, months ago.

        We don’t even know what that would look like!

        But the truly alarming thing is how fast standards are falling, Kozinski wouldn’t have been kicked off the bench in our climate, he’d get a medal or maybe an appointment to SCOTUS from the GOP. Same with the McFadden recusal on Benton, him NOT recusing would have been unthinkable just 15 or so years ago. Nor would Trenga’s arbitrary sadism go unnoticed.

        Now, the criminality is expected. That comes with the deal.

        • bmaz says:

          Hey now, I used to know Alex Kozinski a bit. He was an absolutely brilliant jurist and legal mind. His problem was not his judging, but other issues. It is right that he is gone from the scene, but it is not as to the work product.

          • Mojo Risin' says:

            Uh huh. No blind spot to the good old boy W-era DoJ culture at all. Nosiree. Kirkland and Leon Black exist in totally different universes.

  2. Troutwaxer says:

    Hmmm… The Ultra-Conservatives are finding out how the other half gets treated. The poor dears – being treated like those 47% taker scum. They won’t learn anything from it, and I’m trying to avoid schadenfreude, but damn!

    Good for Judge Lambeth!

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