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Judge To Consider Agreement In AZ Prison Discrimination Case

A federal judge said Monday she was considering an agreement between Arizona and an inmate to end a claim of racial segregation in the state’s 10 prisons.

U.S. District Court Judge Cindy Jorgenson in Tucson said she would soon decide whether to accept what she called a sweeping proposal between attorneys for an inmate and for the state.

The agreement came after a year of negotiations involving the civil rights lawsuit filed in 2013 by inmate Stephen Rudisil alleging the state Department of Corrections violated the Constitution by using race-based housing and work assignments.

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Rudisill, an African-American, said he was housed with another African-American who pressured him into joining a gang.

Arizona is believed to be one of the only states that uses race as a factor in housing assignments.