San Francisco, CA — After a lengthy legal battle, a 20-year-old policy in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has been abolished.
The department initially instituted the policy of segregating inmates by race as a means to combat gang related violence in the institutions.
The department is planning to completely integrate prisoners within the next two years.
The change stems from a lawsuit filed by inmate Garrison Johnson who was sentenced for murder in 1987.
The case was eventually heard by the U.S. Supreme Court which decided that racial segregation should only be allowed under extraordinary circumstances.
The case went to mediation after being remanded to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Under new policy, cell-mate assignments will be based on age and offense committed in addition to other factors.
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