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Ala. Judge To Decide In Lawsuit Over HIV-Positive Inmates

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File photo of a jail cell. (credit: TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of a jail cell. (credit: TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — It’s up to a federal judge in Montgomery to decide if the Alabama Department of Corrections can continue to isolate inmates who have tested positive for HIV even though the virus is no longer considered a death sentence.

Last month, U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson heard arguments made during the month-long trial challenging Alabama’s decades-old policy of mostly separating HIV-positive inmates from other prisoners.

ACLU lawyer Margaret Winter was the lead attorney representing the inmates. She said based on what Thompson told attorneys, she expects the judge to issue an opinion soon.

During the trial, attorneys for the state said HIV-positive inmates are allowed to participate in the same programs as other prisoners. A statement from prisons spokesman Brian Corbett said HIV-positive inmates are not universally segregated.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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