United States District Court, C.D. Illinois
NORBERT V. PINZON, Plaintiff,
DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, WARDEN, et al., Defendants.
E. SHADID CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
cause is before the Court for a merit review, pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 1915A, of Plaintiff Norbert V. Pinzon's
REVIEW UNDER 28 U.S.C. § 1915(A)
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) and § 1915A, the Court is
required to carefully screen a complaint filed by a plaintiff
who seeks to proceed in forma pauperis. The Court
must dismiss a complaint, or a portion thereof, if the
plaintiff has raised claims that are legally “frivolous
or malicious, ” that fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted, or that seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune from such relief. Id. The
test for determining if an action is frivolous or without
merit is whether the plaintiff can make a rational argument
on the law or facts in support of the claim. Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A complaint fails to
state a claim for relief if the complaint does not allege
“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); Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678-79 (2009).
reviewing the complaint, the Court accepts the factual
allegations as true and liberally construes them in
plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d
645, 651 (7th Cir. 2013). Conclusory statements
and labels are insufficient. Fed.R.Civ.P. 8; Schatz v.
Republican State Leadership Comm., 669 F.3d 50,
55 (1st Cir. 2012)(holding that, in order to
determine if a complaint states a plausible claim, the court
must take non-conclusory, non-speculative facts as true, draw
all reasonable inferences in the pleader's favor, and
isolate and ignore statements that simply rehash claim
elements or offer only legal labels and conclusions).
Instead, sufficient facts must be provided to “state a
claim for relief that is plausible on its face.”
Alexander v. United States, 721 F.3d 418,
422 (7th Cir. 2013)(internal quotation omitted).
is an inmate within the Illinois Department of Corrections
(“IDOC”). During the relevant time, Pinzon was
housed the Danville Correctional Center
(“Danville”). Since filing this suit, Pinzon has
been transferred to the Pinckneyville Correctional Center
alleges that the roof at Danville leaked. Pinzon claims that,
even though he changed cells several times, the roof always
leaked in whatever cell he was placed. Pinzon claims that, as
a result, he got wet and that the leaking roof violated his
right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment under the
Eighth Amendment and his Due Process rights under the
Complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted. Initially, the Court notes that Pinzon cannot obtain
injunctive relief because he is no longer being housed at
Danville. Higgason v. Farley, 83 F.3d 807, 811
(7th Cir. 1996)(holding that a transfer to another
institution moots prisoner's request for injunctive
relief unless he makes a showing that he will likely be
transferred to that first institution).
Pinzon's Complaint fails to state a claim because he has
failed to allege that he suffered any damages as a result of
the leaking roof. Pinzon alleges that he got wet when the
the Constitution does not concern itself with trifles.
American Jewish Congress v. City of Chicago, 827
F.2d 120, 132 (7th Cir. 1987)(Easterbrook, J.
dissenting). Indeed, the United States Supreme Court has made
clear that “[t]he Eighth Amendment does not outlaw
cruel and unusual ‘conditions;' it outlaws cruel
and unusual ‘punishments.'” Farmer v.
Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 837 (1994). This means that
“an official's failure to alleviate a significant
risk that he should have perceived but did not, while no
cause for commendation, cannot . . . be condemned as an
infliction of punishment.” Id. at 838.
Accordingly, “a prison official cannot be found liable
under the Eighth Amendment for denying an inmate humane
conditions of confinement unless the official knows of and
disregards an excessive risk to inmate health or safety; the
official must both be aware of the facts from which the
inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of serious
harm exists, and he must also draw the inference.”
Id. at 837.
type of deliberate indifference “implies at a minimum
actual knowledge of impending harm easily preventable, so
that a conscious, culpable refusal to prevent the harm can be
inferred from the defendant's failure to prevent
it.” Duckworth v. Frazen, 780 F.2d 645, 653
(7th Cir. 1985). “[M]ere negligence or even
gross negligence does not constitute deliberate indifference,
” Snipes v. DeTella, 95 F.3d 586, 590
(7th Cir. 1996), and it is not enough to show that
a prison official merely failed to act ...