United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Peoria Division
MERIT REVIEW OPINION
JOE BILLY McDADE, District Judge.
Plaintiff, proceeding pro se and incarcerated at Pontiac Correctional Center, brings the present lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging Eighth Amendment violations for excessive force, conditions of confinement, deliberate indifference to a serious medical need, and First Amendment violations related to his religious practices. The matter comes before this Court for merit review under 28 U.S.C. §1915A. In reviewing the complaint, the Court takes all factual allegations as true, liberally construing them in Plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d 645, 649 (7th Cir. 2013).
June 17, 2013 Incident
During a cell extraction, Plaintiff alleges he was punched and kicked several times, and he was sprayed with a chemical agent four times in three-second intervals: twice in the face, once in the genitals and once all over his back. As a result, Plaintiff alleges several dark bruises developed on his body, and that chemical agent along with the psoriasis on his skin caused an extreme burning sensation. Plaintiff alleges that his skin glowed bright red-orange from the amount of chemical agent used.
Plaintiff alleges several requests for a shower were denied. Instead, he was placed naked into a cell and told to rinse off with water from the sink. Plaintiff remained in the cell for approximately two (2) days without basic personal hygiene supplies, including toilet paper. His requests for those items fell upon deaf ears, as did his request for cleaning supplies upon the discovery of dried feces within the cell. The smell of feces, Plaintiff alleges, made it difficult for him to eat. Plaintiff alleges that attempts to clean the chemical agent off his body resulted in approximately one inch of standing water in the cell. Furthermore, Plaintiff alleges that he was unable to stop walking because, if he did, the burning sensation on his skin became too intense. After an extended period of time, Plaintiff alleges he collapsed from exhaustion. No help was provided.
Plaintiff was moved to a different cell where he was eventually given a jumpsuit, but denied personal hygiene items. Three days later (and 5 days after the cell extraction), Plaintiff was allowed to shower, but still required to wear the same jumpsuit containing residue from the chemical spray. Plaintiff received bedding and personal hygiene items shortly thereafter.
Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Kennell, the prison chaplain, denied Plaintiff's requests to change his religious affiliation, to be provided the exact dates of religious holidays for purposes of requesting special meals, and for an otherwise kosher diet. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Kennell told Plaintiff to skip meals if Plaintiff wanted to fast in observance of those holidays, and that any food provided on those days would be his regular prison meal. In addition, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Kennell made several derogatory remarks regarding Plaintiff's religious affiliation.
Plaintiff's Medical Condition
Plaintiff alleges that he suffers from severe psoriasis on his skin, and as part of treatment, he receives prescription medication. During an unspecified time period, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants Tilden and Ojelaide, both prison doctors, as well as Defendant Arroyo, the healthcare administrator, denied Plaintiff's requests to be seen by a dermatologist. Furthermore, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Tilden ordered prescription medication for Plaintiff, but that Plaintiff did not receive it until approximately one month later.
Excessive Force Claims
According to Plaintiff, Defendant DeLong ordered a cell extraction after Plaintiff refused to leave his cell for transfer to administrative detention on June 17, 2013 in the North Cell House. At the time, Plaintiff alleges he was confused and was suffering from mental health issues and wanted to be transferred back to the mental health unit. Plaintiff alleges that he was "gassed" four times, punched, kicked, and sprayed excessively with a chemical agent during the extraction. Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Forbes and several unknown officials participated in the ...