GLEN - Three more inmates are suing Montgomery County's sheriff and the jail administrator over what they allege is unfair treatment at the jail.
Inmates Myron J. Kilmartin, Michael L. Oliver and Bryant O. Vega filed their claims in the New York Northern District Court against Sheriff Michael Amato and jail Administrator Michael Franko.
The inmates claim, among other allegations, the sheriff unfairly places them in protective custody because of past offenses. They are alleging violations of their civil rights.
A dozen county jail inmates have filed prisoner civil rights lawsuits over the past three months. Some of them claim they are placed in protective custody because of their sex-crime convictions or pending sex-related charges.
Some of the inmates are seeking monetary damages. Kilmartin, for example, is seeking $3.8 million in his lawsuit, according to court documents. Other inmates have stated in their court filings they are seeking $1 million for discrimination and $500,000 for pain and suffering.
The inmates say the protective-custody status means they are restricted to their cells 23 hours a day and deprived of rights afforded to other prisoners, violating their rights under the 8th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibits "cruel and unusual punishment," and a section of the New York Codes, Rules and Regulations prohibiting "discriminatory treatment."
Some of the inmates have stated in their lawsuits they are not allowed to talk to other inmates and do not have access to academic, vocational or religious programs or services.
Montgomery County's attorney recently expressed a concern the county's insurance premiums may rise even if every lawsuit is won by the county or thrown out.
Montgomery County Undersheriff Jeffery T. Smith previously said protective custody is designed to keep inmates from harm.
He said it's the Sheriff's Department's policy not to comment on the specific housing or location of an inmate.