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Perkins v. Lieutenant

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

July 16, 2014

WILLIE PERKINS, No. R16760, Plaintiff,
v.
WARDEN MARTIN, CALVIN S. PIND, and UNKNOWN LIEUTENANT, Defendants.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

J. PHIL GILBERT, District Judge.

Plaintiff Willie Perkins, an inmate in Big Muddy River Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, based on an alleged failure to protect Plaintiff from his cellmate at Shawnee Correctional Center. His complaint was dismissed without prejudice and he was granted leave to file an amended complaint (Doc. 9). Now before the Court is Plaintiff's amended complaint (Doc. 14).

The amended complaint is now before the Court for a preliminary review 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.

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). Frivolousness is an objective standard that refers to a claim that "no reasonable person could suppose to have any merit." Lee v. Clinton, 209 F.3d 1025, 1026-27 (7th Cir. 2000). 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). The claim of entitlement to relief must cross "the line between possibility and plausibility. Id. at 557. At this juncture, the factual allegations of the pro se complaint are to be liberally construed. See Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).

The Amended Complaint

According to the complaint and documentation attached to the complaint, in the early hours of the morning on October 18, 2013, Plaintiff Perkins' cellmate threatened to beat Plaintiff-apparently because Plaintiff was reading the Bible with the light on, but Plaintiff is not sure. The cellmate had begun packing his things, and he told Plaintiff that he was about to do something that would get him sent to segregation. Plaintiff perceived that his cellmate was going to harm him.

Plaintiff subsequently discussed the situation with his teacher; the teacher filled out a "movement sheet" aimed at securing a cell change for Plaintiff. The request was relayed to an unidentified lieutenant. Plaintiff later spoke with the lieutenant and C/O Calvin S. Pind, informing them that he was in imminent danger. No action was taken and Plaintiff's cellmate subsequently attacked him, beating Plaintiff and biting his ear into three pieces.

The Court finds it convenient to frame the pro se action into a single, overarching count. The parties and the Court will use this designation in all future pleadings and orders, unless otherwise directed by a judicial officer of this Court.

Count 1: C/O Pind and Unidentified Correctional Lieutenant failed to protect Plaintiff from physical harm at the hands of his cellmate, ...

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