Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

YOUNG v. BREEDING

May 6, 1996

CHRISTOPHER YOUNG, Plaintiff,
v.
ROBERT BREEDING, CINDY CASAGRANDE, CAPTAIN DOUGLAS, MARILYN COUTEE, CHARLES FREDERICK, KEITH COOPER, RONALD CARTER, SERGIO MOLINA, and DR. HIEN DANG, Defendants.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: ASPEN

 MARVIN E. ASPEN, Chief Judge:

 Plaintiff Christopher Young brings this civil complaint against nine employees of the Joliet Correctional Center, alleging that his constitutional rights were violated during his incarceration at the facility in June 1995. Presently before this court is a motion to dismiss the complaint with regard to the following six defendants: Robert Breeding, Ronald Carter, Cindy Casagrande, Keith Cooper, Dr. Hien Dang, and Sergio Molina. *fn1" For the reasons set forth below, the motion to dismiss is granted as to Defendant Molina, granted in part and denied in part as to Defendants Breeding and Carter, and denied as to Defendants Casagrande, Cooper, and Dang.

 I. Background

 Young alleges in his complaint that on June 22, 1995, he was incarcerated in Joliet's segregation unit with an inmate named Eniss. The plaintiff contends that Defendant Breeding, while distributing food trays to him and his cellmate, verbally threatened Young. *fn2" Eniss asked Young what this altercation was all about, and as Young related the story of his prior encounters with Breeding, he began to suffer an asthma attack. Young alleges that Eniss started banging on the cell door and yelling for a medical technician to assist the plaintiff.

 When defendants Breeding and Carter returned to the cell to pick up the food trays, Eniss tried to tell them of Young's asthma attack and, presumably in attempt to get their attention, threw hot coffee on Breeding. Breeding responded to this attack by spraying mace into the cell, further exacerbating Young's asthmatic condition. Eniss then tore a pipe out of the cell wall, and proceeded to break open the cell door window and damage the cell walls. Approximately thirty minutes later Defendant Casagrande, a nurse at Joliet, arrived at the cell with Breeding. However, Young claims she refused to provide him with any medical assistance and left the area. Eniss once again began to destroy the cell with the pipe he had torn from the wall. At this point jail officials apparently had enough of Eniss's antics, and Defendants Molina, Douglas, and other unidentified officers pulled Young and Eniss from the cell. Young claims that Douglas cuffed his hands and legs, and then dragged him down a staircase toward the health care unit, all the while hitting him in the face and running him into walls and doors.

 When he arrived at the prison hospital, Young maintains that he was placed in a "strip cell," where he was stripped of his clothes and forced to endure the extremely cold air from the hospital's air conditioning system. Young claims he had no clothing, blankets, mats, sheets, or pillows during his first night in the strip cell. Indeed, he alleges that in an effort to stay warm, he wrapped himself in toilet paper.

 The following day Dr. Dang met with Young and ordered him a blanket and a mat. Dang also informed Young that Warden Cooper no longer wanted him at Joliet, and that he would be transferred to Menard Psychiatric Center. Young allegedly wrote numerous letters to Cooper requesting to meet with him and explain the events that had transpired, but he claims that Cooper never responded. Young further claims that he repeatedly sought release from the strip cell, but he was detained in this cell until his transfer to Menard. *fn3" Young maintains that each time he demanded to be released from the strip cell or see Warden Cooper, he was given a shot of medication per orders from Dang and another unnamed doctor. Although Young does not state exactly what kind of medication he received, it appears from the complaint that he believes some form of antipsychotic drug was administered in order to calm him down.

 Young filed the instant complaint on August 7, 1995, alleging that Breeding, Carter, and Casagrande refused to provide him with medical care in response to his asthma attack, thereby violating his rights under the Eighth Amendment. He also claimed that Breeding, Molina, and Douglas inflicted unnecessary harm on him by macing his cell and injuring him on the way to the hospital, and that Cooper and Dang improperly transported him to a mental institution. Finally, he claims that Dang illegally administered drugs to him in order to keep him sedated. *fn4" Six of the defendants now move to dismiss the claims against them.

 II. Motion to Dismiss Standard

 A motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) should not be granted "unless it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support of his claims which would entitle him to relief." Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 45-46, 2 L. Ed. 2d 80, 78 S. Ct. 99 (1957); Chaney v. Suburban Bus Div. of the Regional Transp. Auth., 52 F.3d 623, 627 (7th Cir. 1995). At this stage in the litigation we take as true all factual allegations made in the complaint, and construe all reasonable inferences therefrom in the plaintiff's favor. Murphy v. Walker, 51 F.3d 714, 717 (7th Cir. 1995). Moreover, as compared with pleadings drafted by attorneys, complaints written by pro se litigants are examined under a less arduous standard. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520-21, 30 L. Ed. 2d 652, 92 S. Ct. 594 (1972); Kincaid v. Vail, 969 F.2d 594, 598 (7th Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 506 U.S. 1062, 122 L. Ed. 2d 152, 113 S. Ct. 1002 (1993). However, unsupported conclusions of fact and conclusions of law will not defeat an otherwise meritorious motion to dismiss. See Cushing v. City of Chicago, 3 F.3d 1156, 1160-61 n.5 (7th Cir. 1993); Watters v. Harris, 656 F.2d 234, 240 (7th Cir. 1980).

 III. Discussion

 A. Excessive Force and Claims of Verbal Threats

 Young alleges that Breeding verbally threatened him while distributing food trays to his segregation cell. Such threats, if made, were clearly unprofessional and inexcusable. However, allegations of verbal abuse and threats by correctional officers are insufficient grounds for relief under ยง 1983. See Daniels v. Southfort, 6 F.3d 482, 484 (7th Cir. 1993); Patton v, Przybylski, 822 F.2d 697, 700 (7th Cir. 1987); ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.