The Nation

Rhode Island failed to meet a deadline for eliminating prison overcrowding and faces potential fines of $50 a day for each of the 147 excess inmates. The intake center at the state prison complex held 397 people, said Joseph A. DiNitto, assistant to Corrections Director John Moran. U.S. District Judge Raymond Pettine, responding to a complaint from the American Civil Liberties Union, had set a limit of 250 prisoners at the intake center and threatened to impose fines of $50 per day for excess inmates. Pettine warned state officials Jan. 31 that he would be "very hard-nosed about this" when he considers levying fines at a March 13 hearing. DiNitto said the state has made a good-faith effort to comply with the judge's order, removing 135 inmates from the intake center since Wednesday.

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