capacities. In fact, as defendants point out, Campbell has consistently referred to them in his various pleadings by both their name and official titles, thereby implying that he has sued them in their official capacities. (Defendants' Motion at 12).
Nevertheless, as noted above, pro se complaints "must be construed liberally and held to less stringent standards than those applied to complaints drafted by attorneys." Swofford v. Mandrell, 969 F.2d 547, 549 (7th Cir. 1992). Courts can, and in many cases should, consider allegations made in the other filings of pro se plaintiffs to assist them in this regard. In his response to defendants' motion for summary judgment, Campbell explains that he used the defendants' official titles for identification purposes only, and that he always intended to sue them in their individual, not official capacities. (Plaintiff's Response at 5). The court accepts Campbell's explanation, and will construe his complaint to name defendants in their individual capacities. Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment on Eleventh Amendment grounds is denied.
III. Eighth Amendment Violation
Defendants have moved for summary judgment in favor of all named defendants (including the two who have not yet been served) on Campbell's Eighth Amendment claim. For the reasons stated below, the court finds that summary judgment on this claim is not appropriate at this time.
Rule 56(c) states that summary judgment "shall be rendered forthwith if the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue of material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. " Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). The evidence that has been brought forth is examined in the most favorable light to the non-moving party. Bowyer v. United States Dept. of Air Force, 804 F.2d 428, 430 (7th. Cir 1986). It is up to the non-moving party, however, to bring forth specific facts demonstrating that there is a genuine issue of material fact that must be resolved at trial. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 250, 91 L. Ed. 2d 202, 106 S. Ct. 2505 (1986). If a factual dispute is found, it must be over a fact that is material to an essential element of the non-moving party's case. Id., Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986). Even if the facts are not in dispute, summary judgment would be inappropriate where there is a disagreement about the inferences that may be reasonably drawn from the facts. Environmental Transp. Sys. v. Ensco, Inc., 969 F.2d 503, 510 (7th Cir. 1992); Bowyer, 804 F.2d at 430.
Plaintiff has charged that defendants have violated his Eighth Amendment rights by holding him in prison well over the term of his sentence. The Supreme Court has recently clarified the standard for liability of prison officials in section 1983 cases charging a deprivation of a prisoner's Eighth Amendment rights. Farmer v. Brennan, 128 L. Ed. 2d 811, 114 S. Ct. 1970, 1977 (1994). For a prison official to be held liable for violating the Eighth Amendment, two conditions must be met. First, the deprivation must be "sufficiently serious," resulting in the denial of "the minimal civilized measure of life's necessities." Id. Second, the official who has committed the deprivation must have had a "sufficiently culpable state of mind." Id. Specifically, the official must have had either actual intent to cause the deprivation, or have been "deliberately indifferent" to a substantial risk that such a deprivation would occur. 114 S. Ct. at 1977-78. The standard for deliberate indifference is subjective and based on actual knowledge of the substantial risk; "the official must both be aware of facts from which the inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of serious harm exists, and he must also draw the inference." Id. at 1979. If, in the face of such knowledge, the official chose to do nothing to prevent the harm from occurring, the official would then be liable. Id.
A. Campbell's Deprivation was Sufficiently Serious
Incarceration of an individual beyond the term of his sentence is "quintessentially punitive." Sample v. Diecks, 885 F.2d 1099, 1108-09 (3rd Cir. 1989); see also Moore v. Tartler, 986 F.2d 682 (3d Cir. 1993); Haygood v. Younger, 769 F.2d 1350 (9th Cir. 1985); Lundblade v. Franzen, 631 F. Supp. 214 (N.D. Ill. 1986). Even if such imprisonment is the result of an innocent error on the part of the state officials who were responsible, it is still punitive in nature, though the mistaken nature of the punishment may bear on whether the punishment was deliberately imposed. 885 F.2d at 1108-09. Anything more than a de minimis incarceration beyond a prisoner's proper sentence satisfies the requirement, under Farmer, 114 S. Ct. at 1977, that the punishment, if inflicted along with the culpable state of mind, be "sufficiently serious" to pose a constitutional violation. See Haygood, 769 F.2d at 1354 ("detention beyond the termination of a sentence could constitute cruel and unusual punishment if it is the result of 'deliberate indifference' to the prisoner's liberty interest"). Here, plaintiff was imprisoned up to two years beyond his legal release date. The deprivation was sufficiently serious to support Campbell's Eighth Amendment claim.
B. Culpable State of Mind
Whether defendants acted with a sufficiently culpable state of mind is the real question at issue here. As noted above, plaintiff has alleged that defendants, especially Williams intentionally engaged in a "diabolical scheme" to keep him in prison beyond his term.
In support of his claim against Williams, plaintiff has submitted an affidavit from Frank Ralph of the Office of the State Appellate Defender's Office, the attorney who represented him in the habeas corpus proceedings before the Illinois courts. (See Plaintiff's Response, Affidavit of Frank Ralph). In the affidavit, Ralph states that in his dealings with Williams, Williams exhibited a "very strong antagonism" towards plaintiff. Williams quotes from a letter written by another Assistant Appellate Defender, Verlin Meinz, in which Meinz also expresses concern about Williams' attitude towards plaintiff. Meinz relates how Williams "denigrated our efforts on Mr. Campbell's behalf, in the process referring to Mr. Campbell in the most unflattering ways." He also points out that Williams appeared to be "absolutely gleeful" about the fact that, since a Michigan warrant for the plaintiff had been revived around the time that the Illinois court had ordered plaintiff's release, plaintiff was not to be fully released from custody. Meinz dealings with Williams led him "to wonder about Mr. Williams' overall involvement with the Campbell case." (See Affidavit of Frank Ralph P 15).
Evidence of Williams' personal animus against Campbell is insufficient, in and of itself, to establish that he intentionally sought to keep Campbell imprisoned beyond his release date. Our nation's prisons are no doubt well-stocked with prison guards and officials who have no particular fondness for their charges. Indeed, given the numerous threats and assaults Campbell is alleged to have committed against prison guards and his fellow inmates, Williams' dislike for Campbell appears to be perfectly understandable. However, when Williams' alleged personal animus against Campbell is considered in conjunction with the magnitude of the sentencing error, and the apparent ease with which it could have been detected by someone in Williams' position, Campbell's theory of the case is less easily dismissed. Under these circumstances, a reasonable fact-finder could find that Williams intentionally harmed Campbell by failing to correct any sentencing errors he discovered when investigating plaintiff's numerous complaints. Summary judgment on behalf of defendant Williams is therefore denied.
Plaintiff alleges that the other defendants were also in on Williams' "diabolical scheme" against him. With respect to these defendants, however, Williams only evidence of intentional wrong-doing is his assertion that he was not given the customary $ 100.00 "gate money" when he was released from custody in July 1990. (Plaintiff's Response at 4). In support of his claim that this seemingly minor omission demonstrates an intent to punish him, plaintiff again cites Ralph's affidavit:
"we were told that [plaintiff] had received gate money upon his initial release from custody and that he was entitled to none when he was released after reincarceration as a parole violator.... When we pointed out the following day that Mr. Campbell had been incarcerated for a new conviction as well as parole violation, and therefore should have gotten gate money for the new offense, we were told that the warden in his discretion would determine whether Mr. Campbell would get any money. The warden subsequently denied any money to Mr. Campbell.