October 1, 2014
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that accuses Nebraska prison officials of reneging on a 2005 agreement to accommodate Native American inmates' religious and cultural needs.
U.S. District Judge Warren Urbom rejected the request, saying he had no jurisdiction to enforce the terms of the agreement, but suggested the case be filed in a state court.
In 2005, prison officials agreed to allow Native American inmates time for religious education and worship ceremonies and use traditional, ceremonial foods such as fry bread, buffalo and corn in their ceremonies.
Inmate Michael Joseph Sims said in his lawsuit that state prison leaders have not allowed those ceremonial foods and have denied access to eagle feathers for ceremonial use, among other things.