South Dakota Jewish inmate sues prison staff, food company over kosher violations


(JTA) — A Jewish inmate in a South Dakota prison filed a lawsuit against corrections staff and a food company alleging that he received food that violated his kosher dietary restrictions.

James Irving Dale, who is serving a 15-year sentence for burglary at the Mike Durfee State Prison, alleged in a federal lawsuit that he was served a rice dish that contained pork products and flavoring, according to The Argus Leader.

Dale claimed that no rabbis visited the prison to certify his food kosher, and that utensils used for his food had also been used to serve food containing pork.

“This renders any food that these contaminated utensils come in contact with as unkosher even if said food starts out as kosher,” Dale said.

Dale, who suffers from hypoglycemia, said additional snacks he received due to his condition also were not kosher.

The Jewish inmate said he received the nonkosher food in September 2013 through October 2015, and is demanding damages of $301 for each nonkosher meal he was given, The Argus Leader reported.

Kosher dietary laws forbid Jews from eating pork.

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