United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Yandle, U.S. District Judge
before the Court for consideration is the First Amended
Complaint (Doc. 5) filed by Plaintiff Kenneth Butusov, an
inmate who is currently incarcerated at Sheridan Correctional
Center (“Sheridan”). Plaintiff filed this civil
rights action pro se pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983 against officials who ignored, delayed or denied his
grievances at Lawrence Correctional Center
(“Lawrence”) (Doc. 5, pp. 1-17).
seven months in 2015, Plaintiff filed several grievances with
C. Ray, a counselor who worked in the prison's infirmary
(Doc. 5, pp. 9-12, 14-16). Plaintiff complained that he and
other inmates were denied adequate medical care. Counselor
Ray told Plaintiff not to expect any responses to the
grievances. When Plaintiff complained about Counselor
Ray's conduct to supervisory officials, he was instructed
to rewrite and resubmit the grievances. The second round of
grievances were also denied (id.).
now claims that the delay in processing his grievances
hindered his ability to file suit against his medical
providers (id.). In connection with this claim, he
names the grievance officials as the only defendants in this
action. He seeks monetary damages against them (id.
Review Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A
case is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the
First Amended Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A.
Under § 1915A, the Court is required to promptly screen
prisoner Complaints, including the First Amended Complaint,
to filter out nonmeritorious claims. 28 U.S.C. §
1915A(a). The Court is required to dismiss any portion of the
First Amended Complaint that is legally frivolous, malicious,
fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted or
asks for money damages from a defendant who by law is immune
from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b).
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). 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.
Conversely, a Complaint is plausible on its face “when
the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). Although the Court is
obligated to accept factual allegations as true, see
Smith v. Peters, 631 F.3d 418, 419 (7th Cir. 2011), some
factual allegations may be so sketchy or implausible that
they fail to provide sufficient notice of a plaintiff's
claim. Brooks v. Ross, 578 F.3d 574, 581 (7th Cir.
2009). Additionally, Courts “should not accept as
adequate abstract recitations of the elements of a cause of
action or conclusory legal statements.” Id. At
the same time, however, the factual allegations of a pro
se Complaint are to be liberally construed. See
Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821
(7th Cir. 2009). Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint does
not survive review under this standard and shall be
his incarceration at Lawrence in 2015, Plaintiff submitted
several grievances to Counselor Ray over the course of seven
months (Doc. 5, p. 11). For example, on March 8, 2015,
Plaintiff submitted a grievance to complain about
Wexford's policy, custom or practice of understaffing and
overworking medical staff at Lawrence (id. at 10).
As a result, the dressings on his wound were not
regularly changed and his medications were frequently
“mixed up” (id.).
March 14, 2015, Plaintiff wrote a grievance to complain about
the inadequate medical care provided to another inmate. In
the grievance, he indicated that he observed another patient
cry out in pain during the night. Plaintiff pushed the
emergency call button repeatedly, but no one arrived to
address the inmate's pain for almost two hours
April 13, 2015, Plaintiff complained about Nurse Welty's
failure to change a bandage on his Stage 4 wound. He alleges
that “saturated gauze” covered his wound when
Nurse Welty finished her shift and left. This was a common
practice among members of the nursing staff (id. at
April 18, 2015, an outside wound doctor ordered an MRI to
determine why Plaintiff's wound was not healing. The
doctor concluded that Plaintiff suffered from a bone
infection in his pelvis known as osteomyelitis. The outside
provider instructed Doctor Coe to treat the infection before
it became septic, but Doctor Coe took no action to address
it. As a result, Plaintiff now suffers from a chronic
infection in his pelvis (id.).
alleges that Counselor Ray never processed any of these
grievances. He told Plaintiff not to expect a response
because his complaints were “bullshit”
(id. at 9). Plaintiff insists that Counselor
Ray's conduct prevented him from exhausting his
administrative remedies and filing a complaint against the
medical staff for denying him adequate medical care
11, 2015, Plaintiff spoke with Assistant Warden Treadway
during her visit to the prison's infirmary (id.
at 12). He explained that Counselor Ray routinely ignored his
grievances, some of which addressed medical issues. Treadway
called Counselor Ray into the room and asked, “What is
it with you and all these grievances?” (id.).
She then told Plaintiff that Counselor ...