March 5, 2012, Testimony

March 5, 2012: In today’s session, the court heard from Plaintiff’s expert witness, Steve Carter, a prominent Columbia-based architect who is the founder and managing partner of Carter Goble Associates. Mr. Carter has specialized in correctional facility planning for more than 30 years. He has consulted with correctional system officials in more than 35 states and many nations.

Mr. Carter testified regarding options available to the SC Department of Corrections to improve the agency's physical capacity to provide confidential and secure mental health services to inmates in appropriate settings.  Mr. Carter identified existing locations that could be re-purposed in order to provide secure group therapy settings for mentally inmates currently housed in high security areas.  He also presented potential locations and estimated costs for the option of constructing new facilities designed to centralize mental health services and housing as well as provide space for secure group therapy, all in the same facility.  Mr. Carter provided cost estimates for increasing mental health staffing to meet the needs identified earlier in the trial by the psychiatrists who testified for Plaintiffs.

With the conclusion of Mr. Carter’s testimony, plaintiffs rested their case in chief.  Defendants will call their second witness when Court resumes Tuesday at 9 a.m.