United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
MICHAEL J. REAGAN U.S. Chief District Judge.
Aishef Shaffer, an inmate in Pickneyville Correctional
Center, brings this action for deprivations of his
constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He
seeks declarative, nominal, compensatory, and punitive
damages, as well as injunctive relief. (Doc. 1, p. 1). 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
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 any reasonable
person would find meritless. 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.
careful review of the Complaint and any supporting exhibits,
the Court finds it appropriate to exercise its authority
under § 1915A; portions of this action are subject to
November 5, 2015, Kbat was working as a transport officer,
responsible for moving inmates to and from the chow hall.
(Doc. 1, p. 9). At approximately 9:30 am that day, a fight
broke out between two inmates as housing unit R3- A wing was
leaving the housing unit for chow. (Doc. 1, p. 9). McDonald,
who was also working transport, called a 10-10, and told all
inmates to sit on the ground. (Doc. 1, p. 9). Plaintiff fully
complied with that order. (Doc. 1, p. 10). McDonald and
Cacioppo broke up the fight, and the inmates involved were
cuffed and taken to segregation. (Doc. 1, p. 10). Belford
then arrived on the scene. (Doc. 1, p. 10).
without warning, Kbat ran up behind Plaintiff and kicked him
repeatedly while waiving a can of mace in his face and
threatening Plaintiff. (Doc. 1, p. 10). Kbat said “you
mutha fucka [sic] don't want to fuck with me today.
I'll knock you the fuck out.” Cacioppo, Belford,
McDonald, and Baker were all present at that time. (Doc. 1,
p. 10). Plaintiff alleges that he was not causing a
disturbance and was following all IDOC rules and policies.
(Doc. 1, p. 10). He further alleges that as a result of the
assault, he experienced severe pain in his back. (Doc. 1, p.
requested medical attention from Cacioppo, McDonald, and
Baker, but they refused to take him to the health care unit.
Cacioppo stated “If you can breath [sic] your [sic]
alright, ” and then laughed and walked away. (Doc. 1,
p. 11). Several other inmates told Baker and Cacioppo that
Kbat kicked Plaintiff, but the guards ignored them. (Doc. 1,
p. 11). Plaintiff had difficulty walking to chow due to the
pain in his back; he told Belford, but Belford ignored
Plaintiff's request for medical attention. (Doc. 1, p.
12). Once back at his housing unit, Plaintiff repeated his
request for medical attention to Baker and Cacioppo again,
but Baker told him, “your [sic] be fine write a
grievance.” (Doc. 1, p. 12). Plaintiff continued to be
ignored by Cacioppo. (Doc. 1, p. 13).
afternoon on the same day, Plaintiff reported to internal
affairs to speak to Lt. Furlow. (Doc. 1, p. 13). Plaintiff
reported Kbat's assault. (Doc. 1, p. 14). Furlow reviewed
the video recordings and confirmed the events, but downplayed
the assault, saying “It ain't like you were stump
out, that's nothing.” (Doc. 1, p. 14).
convinced Furlow to take him to health care unit for his
injuries at approximately 3:00 pm. (Doc. 1, p. 15). The Jane
Doe nurse in the health care unit allegedly refused to
evaluate Plaintiff and did not give him any medication. (Doc.
1, p. 15). Medical records submitted by Plaintiff show that a
nurse filled out an injury report for Plaintiff on November
5, 2015, and the report was noted in his medical records.
(Doc. 1-1, p. 2-3). The nurse further noted no redness,
bruising, or swelling, normal vitals, and that Plaintiff was
able bend over without difficulty. (Doc. 1-1, p. 3).
Plaintiff was directed to follow-up with nurse sick call.
(Doc. 1-1, p. 3).
reported to nurse sick call the next day on November 6, 2015
at 11:00 am. (Doc. 1, p. 15). Plaintiff was told that he
could not see a doctor until he submitted two more nurse sick
call slips. (Doc. 1, p. 15-16). Plaintiff's medical
records show that he was referred to the MD on November 6,
2015 at the 11 am visit without having to submit further sick
call slips. (Doc. 1-1, p. 5). The medical record also shows
that Plaintiff previously had a history of back pain caused
by a gunshot wound and an injury he sustained while working
out. (Doc. 1-1, p. 5). The records further note that due to
his chronic back pain, Plaintiff had received 60, 600 mg
prescription ibuprofens on October 20, 2015, two weeks prior
to the incident. (Doc. 1-1, p. 5). The nurse also instructed
Plaintiff on general strengthening exercises and to avoid
heavy sport activities. (Doc. 1-1, p. 5). Plaintiff also
reported at this time that his back pain was not new, but
rather ongoing. (Doc. 1-1, p. 6). Plaintiff alleges that he
continually tried to get attention for his medical needs in
the days following, and was ignored. (Doc. 1, p. 16).
saw Dr. Shah on November 10, 2015 at 11:05 am. (Doc. 1, p.
16). Plaintiff alleges that Shah refused to perform an
examination, take x-rays, or prescribe any medication for
Plaintiff's back pain and lack of mobility. (Doc. 1, p.
16). The medical records show that Shah conducted an
examination. (Doc. 1-1, p. 7). Plaintiff alleges that Shah
told him he'd be fine if he just drank water. (Doc. 1, p.
alleges that Shah's denial of medical care aggravated his
injuries, that he could not walk without difficulty and
discomfort, and that he experienced consistent chronic pain.
(Doc. 1, p. 17). Plaintiff continued to submit nurse sick
call slips, and after he submitted three more, he was seen
again by Shah on November 24, 2015. (Doc. 1, p. 17). Shah
became angry at Plaintiff and sent him away without any
treatment. (Doc. 1, p. 18). He also wrote Plaintiff a
disciplinary ticket for insolence, allegedly to discourage
and obstruct Plaintiff from receiving treatment. (Doc. 1, p.
began grieving his condition. (Doc. 1, p. 18). He alleges
that some of the grievances were never responded to, and that
Flatt and Wheelan ultimately told Plaintiff to stop filing
grievances. (Doc. 1, p. 18). Plaintiff also wrote to Brown