United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL United States District Judge
James Tate, an inmate at Pontiac Correctional Center, brings
this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In his Complaint,
Plaintiff claims that while he was incarcerated at
Pinckneyville Correctional Center, he was unjustifiably
attacked by several defendants. (Doc. 1). He also claims that
medical treatment of the injuries he sustained in the attack
was inexplicably delayed by the defendants. (Doc. 1).
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.
Complaint (Doc. 1), Plaintiff makes the following
allegations: on October 27, 2015, Plaintiff was attacked in
his cell by Lawless, Homaya, King, Porter, Hiller, and Walla.
(Doc. 1, p. 6-7). During the attack, Lawless rushed at
Plaintiff, struck him with a closed fist, and slammed
Plaintiff into the back of his cell. Id. Homaya,
King, Porter, Hiller, and Walla rushed in on Plaintiff as
well, and when Plaintiff balled up, they slammed him onto his
bed and struck him repeatedly with their hands and knees.
(Doc. 1, p. 7). Walla and Hiller then took turns kicking
Plaintiff in his back as Plaintiff cried and screamed for
them to stop. Id. During the “45 [minute] beat
down, ” Plaintiff was put in hand cuffs while the
officers beat him on his face and whole body. Id.
The officers then carried Plaintiff to another cell because
he was unable to walk properly. (Doc. 1, p. 8).
the cell, which had a cement slab for a bed, Plaintiff was
told to lay down face first and not move. Id.
Plaintiff complied with the order and asked for medical
treatment multiple times. Id. The officers denied to
seek treatment for the wounds Plaintiff sustained in the
attack despite his requests. Id. Plaintiff remained
on the cement slab for some time before he was visited by
Martin, from whom Plaintiff again requested medical
attention. Id. Martin responded that he would advise
Nurse Laury to see him during her 4:00 am rounds and told
Plaintiff to be quiet in the meantime. (Doc. 1, p. 9). When
Laury conducted her rounds, she passed Plaintiff by despite
his need for medical attention. Id. Plaintiff did
not call out to her because he was afraid. Id.
Plaintiff remained on the slab with his injuries untreated
until 8:00am when he heard internal affairs was in the
building. Id. He shouted to them, and Spiller, a
major, and internal affairs officers Lin and Furlow came to
Plaintiff, asked him what happened, took photographs of his
injuries, and took him to medical where he was treated for
bruises and broken bones. Id. Plaintiff requests
monetary damages from the defendants, as well as permanent
injunctive relief to “prevent future harm to
Plaintiff” by the defendants. (Doc. 1, p. 10).
on the allegations of the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the pro se action into
four counts. The parties and the Court will use these
designations in all future pleadings and orders, unless
otherwise directed by a judicial officer of this Court.
Count 1 - Lawless, Homaya, Walla, Porter,
King, and Hiller used excessive force on Plaintiff in
violation of the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against
cruel and unusual punishment when they ...