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Robert Garrett, #N-74351 v. Gregory Schwatz

July 27, 2011

ROBERT GARRETT, #N-74351, PLAINTIFF,
v.
GREGORY SCHWATZ, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



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

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

Plaintiff Robert Garrett, an inmate in Pinckneyville Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff is serving a twenty year sentence for burglary, and a five year sentence for aggravated battery. 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, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). Conversely, a complaint is plausible on its face "when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009). Although the Court is obligated to accept factual allegations as true, some factual allegations may be so sketchy or implausible that they fail to provide sufficient notice of a plaintiff's claim. Brooks v. Ross, 578 F.3d 574, 581 (7th Cir. 2009). Additionally, Courts "should not accept as adequate abstract recitations of the elements of a cause of action or conclusory legal statements." Id. At the same time, however, the factual allegations of a pro se complaint are to be liberally construed. See Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).

Upon careful review of the complaint and supporting exhibits, the Court finds it appropriate to exercise its authority under § 1915A; portions of this action are subject to summary dismissal.

The Complaint

Plaintiff alleges that while he was attending a three-hour class on February 9, 2009, he asked to use the restroom, saying he had an emergency. Defendant DeRosse, the teacher, directed Plaintiff to address his request to the correctional officer in charge, Defendant Colgan. Defendant Colgan denied Plaintiff permission to go, based on the policy set by Defendant Schwatz that inmates would not be allowed to use the restroom during school hours. Plaintiff alleges that because he takes blood pressure medication, he must drink extra water, thus he has a need for frequent trips to the bathroom. After Defendant Colgan refused Plaintiff's request for a bathroom break, Plaintiff was unable to hold his bladder or bowels, and urinated and defecated in his pants.

When Plaintiff's class ended and Plaintiff got in line with other inmates to go to lunch, he again needed to visit the restroom, and asked Defendant Myers for permission to leave the line to relieve himself. Defendant Myers refused permission, and Plaintiff again urinated in his pants.

Plaintiff was required to proceed with the other inmates to the dining hall, where Defendant Lieutenant Dintelmann*fn1 refused to allow Plaintiff to return to the housing unit to clean himself. Defendant Lt. Dintelmann ordered Plaintiff to take his seat, and required him to remain there, sitting in his own excrement, while he ate lunch at a table with four other inmates. Plaintiff was ...


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