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Pro Bono Opportunities


Central District of Illinois

Civil prisoner cases needing Pro Bono Counsel


The Central District of Illinois is in urgent need of pro bono counsel on the following civil prisoner cases.  Please consider volunteering!  Limited appointments will be considered, and you don't have to be local - video-conference technology is available to assist.  A brief description of each case is below.



19-1191 Barkes v Wexford Et Al:  Plaintiff Edward Barkes Jr. brings a claim against mental health professionals at IDOC, alleging that he was maintained on an anti-anxiety medication, Klonopin, for 10 years when such use should have been limited to 6 months. Plaintiff claims that Defendants were deliberately indifferent to the known risk of addiction and debilitating, permanent side effects. Plaintiff claims to be severely compromised as a result of the long-term use of Klonopin.  This case currently has a Discovery Deadline of 1/26/2021 and a Motion Deadline of 2/26/2021.


18-2271 Marrissette V Wexford Et Al: Plaintiff Keith Marrissette alleges an Eighth Amendment claim of deliberate indifference to his medical needs regarding a peanut allergy.  On Dec. 14, 2017, plaintiff ate oatmeal not knowing that it contained peanut butter.  Plaintiff claims that his throat began closing and he began to have trouble breathing but was not allowed to go to health care for medical treatment until later in the day.  District Judge Sue E. Myerscough is seeking recruitment of pro bono counsel for the sole purpose of responding to the Summary Judgment motions.


20-3141 Gilbert v Jeffreys Et Al: Plaintiff complains of deliberate indifference to his post-surgical needs, delays in diagnosing and treating a foot/ankle fracture, failure to accommodate Plaintiff’s disability, and retaliation. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough is presiding over this case and the case is in the service phase.



Any attorney interested in helping as Pro Bono counsel may contact the Pro Bono Coordinator for the Central District of Illinois, Denise Koester at 217-492-4027 or

The Central District of Illinois Plan for Recruitment of Counsel has a cap of $1,000.00 for reimbursement of expenses.