Hall v. Wetzel


The MacArthur Justice Center, together with partners at the Abolitionist Law Center and Amistad Law Project, represents Plaintiff Darrick U. Hall in litigation regarding twenty-four years of solitary confinement endured on Pennsylvania’s death row. Unlike some other states that have moved away from automatic solitary confinement for death-sentenced prisoners, Pennsylvania holds all prisoners sentenced to death in strict isolation regardless of whether they pose a risk to the safety and security of the prison where they are held. Although Mr. Hall has a nearly perfect record in prison, he had no opportunity to live in general population while he appealed his criminal conviction and sentence. Even after a federal district court vacated Mr. Hall’s death sentence, the Pennsylvania Department of Correction insisted on retaining Mr. Hall on death row in solitary confinement until he was resentenced to life — something that could take years.

In February 2018, a federal district court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania granted preliminary relief and required the Department of Correction to immediately remove Mr. Hall from solitary confinement and death row. We continue to litigate this case to correct the grave injustice done to Mr. Hall by the state of Pennsylvania and obtain compensation for Mr. Hall for the decades he spent in solitary confinement.