Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Worst Inmates Have It Better.(Final)

Byline: Leslie Linthicum Journal Staff Writer

N.M. Settlement Allows Exercise, In-Person Visits

The state's most violent prison inmates -- the ones locked down in solitary confinement -- got a break this week.

The New Mexico Corrections Department settled a lawsuit that claimed conditions were barbaric in Levels 5 and 6, the prison system's most restrictive units.

An agreement reached between the state and a team of lawyers for the prisoners allows all Level 5 and Level 6 inmates outdoor recreation, face-to-face visits with friends and family and more comforts in their solitary confinement cells.

It also removes a number of mentally ill prisoners from solitary confinement units and increases the mental health staff.

Corrections Secretary Joe L. …

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