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Larry G. Harris v. Warden Ryker

February 8, 2011

LARRY G. HARRIS,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
WARDEN RYKER, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael J. Reagan United States District Judge

#N-57672,

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER REAGAN, District Judge:

Plaintiff, an inmate in the Lawrence 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, in pertinent part:

(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). Upon careful review of the complaint and any supporting exhibits, the Court finds that this complaint may be dismissed at this point in the litigation. Facts:

While Plaintiff was held in the Mt. Sterling Correctional Center in the Central District of Illinois, he filed a civil rights lawsuit concerning the soy diet which the prison was serving inmates. Plaintiff also assisted 11 other inmates in the filing of similar suits against the prison. Some time thereafter Plaintiff was given 90 days of segregation, and ultimately on June 10th 2009 was transferred to Pinckneyville Correctional Center in the Southern District of Illinois in retaliation for filing suit against Mt. Sterling, and for assisting other inmates to do the same.

Once transferred to Pinckneyville, the retaliation continued in the form of false disciplinary tickets, segregation, and theft of personal property. On December 8th 2009 Plaintiff was again transferred, this time to Lawrence Correctional Center also located in the Southern District of Illinois. While at Lawrence, where Plaintiff is now held, similar incidents of retaliatory conduct have taken place.

Discussion:

Plaintiff alleges that individuals from three separate prisons in the Illinois Department of Corrections have retaliated against him for exercising his right to complain about the conditions of his confinement. Plaintiff also names 20 different Defendants from all three prisons in his complaint. However, Plaintiff does not specify which Defendants committed which acts of retaliation.

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) (a "short and plain" statement of the claim suffices under Fed. R. Civ. P. 8 if it notifies the defendant of the principal events upon which the claims are based); Brokaw v. Mercer County, 235 F.3d 1000, 1024 (7th Cir. 2000) ("notice pleading requires the plaintiff to allege just enough to put the defendant on notice of facts providing a right to recovery"). Furthermore, merely invoking the name of a potential defendant is not ...


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