U.S. District Judge Rachel Kovner of the Eastern District of New York on Tuesday denied a motion for preliminary injunction that would have released medically vulnerable inmates from Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center, finding that the available evidence gives reason for “cautious optimism” about the MDC’s response to COVID-19 so far.

Attorneys from Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law’s Civil Rights Clinic filed a proposed class action lawsuit in late March against MDC Warden Derek Edge. The lawyers represented a group of MDC inmates, several of whom have since been released, and they argued that the court needed to intervene immediately because of severe flaws in the facility’s response to the pandemic.

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