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Slater v. Powers

August 3, 2009

RICHARD E. SLATER, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MARVIN POWERS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Reagan, District Judge

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

Richard Slater, an inmate in the Tamms Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. This case is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, which provides:

(a) Screening.-- The court shall review, before docketing, if feasible or, in any event, as soon as practicable after docketing, a complaint in a civil action in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity.

(b) Grounds for Dismissal.-- On review, the court shall identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the complaint--

(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or

(2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief.

28 U.S.C. § 1915A. An action or claim is frivolous if "it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). An action fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead "enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 1974 (2007).

FACTS ALLEGED

Slater was placed in Tamms Correctional Center December 7, 2005. Prior to this date, Slater had made it known at his previous institution that he is a diabetic, and thus required special medical shoes and an altered diet. Once he entered Tamms, Slater was given a medical checkup, and was told that he no longer needed the medical shoes or certain portions of his altered diet. Specifically, Slater had been given a snack tray in the evening to take along with his diabetes medicine, to control his low blood sugar. After the medical examine by Defendant Powers, Slater was told that his blood sugar level was at a "good" level, and he would no longer require the evening snack.

Slater began filing a long line of grievances in May 2006, complaining that the evening snack tray was still necessary, and that since his medical shoes had been taken from him, he had been experiencing severe knee pain. These grievances were sent to Defendants Caliper, Jones, Moore and Walker, and each grievance was denied because the health issues raised were being monitored.

Slater's grievances continued to state that he had further health problems as a result of his diabetic condition being ignored, including chest pains and kidney problems, as well as further damage to his knee. Powers and Caliper denied that these conditions were ignored, and stated that Slater is scheduled to attend a diabetic clinic at the prison every four months, where any problems are examined.

Because the medical issues he has raised were ignored repeatedly, Slater claims that Powers, Caliper, Sullivan, Walker, Johnson, Jones, and Moore showed deliberate indifference to his medical needs by denying or condoning the denial of necessary medical treatment. Slater also claims that Moore, Powers, and Caliper conspired together to cover up the indifference by ensuring that all grievances filed were denied.

DISCUSSION

Slater has named as co-defendants Carol George, Camille Malone, and Lakeshi Baker. However, Slater has failed to state in his complaint how these individuals are associated with the claims presented. In fact, Slater has failed to include the individuals anywhere in the complaint except for the list of defendants. The reason that Plaintiffs, even those proceeding pro se, for whom the Court is required to liberally construe their complaints, see Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520-21 (1972), are required to associate specific defendants with specific claims is so these defendants are put on notice of the claims brought against them and so they can properly answer the complaint. See Hoskins v. Poelstra, 320 F.3d 761, 764 (7th Cir. 2003) Furthermore, merely invoking the name of a potential defendant is not sufficient to state a claim against that individual. See Collins ...


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