United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL United States District Judge.
Jairo Reyes, an inmate in Pontiac Correctional Center, brings
this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for events that occurred at
Menard Correctional Center. Plaintiff seeks injunctive
relief, as well as compensatory and punitive damages. 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 the supporting exhibits,
the Court finds it appropriate to exercise its authority
under § 1915A; portions of this action are subject to
to the allegations of the complaint, John Doe 1 placed
Plaintiff in administrative detention on April 8, 2013. (Doc.
1, p. 3). John Doe 2 approved the placement. (Doc. 1, p. 3).
Plaintiff did not receive any formal written or oral notice
or a hearing prior to the placement. (Doc. 1, p. 3). The
Illinois Administrative Code directs that Plaintiff should
have received a hearing after 90 days. (Doc. 1, p. 3).
See 20 Ill. Admin. Code § 504.660. But Warden
Atchison allegedly implemented a policy of not giving
hearings until an inmate had been in administrative detention
for 270 days. (Doc. 1, p. 3). Specifically, he created a
three-tiered system of administrative detention where a
hearing was held to determine whether an inmate should be
stepped down to a less restrictive level every 90 days. (Doc.
1, p. 3). Plaintiff was ultimately not released from
administrative detention until December 2, 2015. (Doc. 1, p.
submitted grievances, including one dated August 18, 2013,
regarding his placement to counselor Jonah Hill. (Doc. 1, p.
3). The Administrative Review Board (“ARB”)
ultimately rejected Plaintiff's grievance, and Godinez
signed off on the grievance. (Doc. 1, p. 5). On December 10,
2014, the grievance officer, Marvin Bochantin, refused to
give Plaintiff more information about his placement. (Doc. 1,
p. 5). Counselor Brad Bramlet denied a grievance that
Plaintiff wrote on January 28, 2015, on the grounds that it
was duplicative of Plaintiff's other grievances. (Doc. 1,
p. 5). Lori Oakley and Butler affirmed the grievance. (Doc.
1, p. 5).
was so frustrated by his placement in administrative
detention that he went on a hunger strike. (Doc. 1, p. 3).
Finally, on June 25, 2014, Plaintiff was given an official
notice regarding his placement. The notice was signed by
Shoenbeck and stated that “information from a
confidential informant was received that [Plaintiff] directed
other Latin Folks affiliates to assault staff at
Menard.” (Doc. 1, p. 4). This was the first time that
Plaintiff was given any reason for his placement in
administrative detention. (Doc. 1, p. 4). Plaintiff denies
that he ever ordered Latin Folks to assault staff. (Doc. 1,
hearing was held on July 2, 2014, fifteen months
after Plaintiff was placed in administrative detention. (Doc.
1, p. 4). The committee was comprised of Butler, Jones,
Reichert, Hasemeyer, Shoenbeck, Creason, and John Doe 3.
(Doc. 1, p. 4). Plaintiff told the committee that he was
innocent. (Doc. 1, p. 4). The committee decided to advance
Plaintiff from phase 1 to phase 2. (Doc. 1, p. 4). On
September 23, 2014, Plaintiff was informed that he would be
advanced against from phase 2 to phase 3. (Doc. 1, p. 4).
Plaintiff's placement was reviewed again on December 16,
2014, this time by Butler, Watson, and Clark, and they
determined that Plaintiff should stay in phase 3. (Doc. 1, p.
in administrative detention, Plaintiff was isolated away from
the rest of the population in a steel-door fronted cell.
(Doc. 1, p. 5). The cell lacked hot water for approximately
ten months. (Doc. 1, p. 6). Plaintiff filed grievances to
Mueller and informed staff that he lacked hot water. (Doc. 1,
p. 6). Plaintiff's cell also lacked heat, and it had a
three inch gap in the window that would not close. (Doc. 1,
p. 6). Plaintiff alleges that he became ill as a result of
these conditions. (Doc.1, p. 6). In the summer,
Plaintiff's cell was hot, and his wing did not have the
same kind of industrial fans present on other wings. (Doc. 1,
p. 6). Other prisoners were given ice water twice a day, but
Plaintiff only received ice water three times over the course
of the summer. (Doc. 1, p. 6). Water would also leak from the