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Bryant v. Butler

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

March 13, 2017

KENNETH BRYANT, Plaintiff,
v.
KIMBERLY BUTLER, KENT E. BROOKMAN, MICHAEL E. KEYS, and WILLIAM SPILLER, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          NANCY J. ROSENSTENGEL United States District Judge

         Plaintiff Kenneth Bryant, an inmate in Menard Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff requests 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 such relief.

         An 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. 2009).

         Upon careful review of the Amended Complaint and any supporting exhibits, the Court finds it appropriate to exercise its authority under § 1915A; portions of this action are subject to summary dismissal.

         The Amended Complaint

         Plaintiff originally filed this suit on February 15, 2017, but he neglected to sign the Complaint. (Doc. 1). The Court directed him to do so no later than March 16, 2017, and on March 8, 2017, he filed the Amended Complaint with signature. (Doc. 7).

         According to the allegations in the Amended Complaint, on March 2, 2015, an altercation took place on the yard at Menard Correctional Center involving multiple inmates. (Doc. 7, p. 5). Plaintiff was interviewed in connection with the incident, but he denies that he was involved or knew anything about it. Id. Spiller ultimately wrote Plaintiff a disciplinary ticket charging him with impeding an investigation, fighting, and dangerous disturbance. Id.

         Brookman and Keys conducted the adjustment committee hearing and found Plaintiff guilty of fighting and dangerous disturbance, allegedly despite a lack of evidence. Id. Plaintiff was sentenced to one year segregation, one year C-grade, one year commissary loss, and one year good conduct credit loss. Id. Plaintiff also was transferred to Pontiac Correctional Center. Id. Butler signed off on the disciplinary report as Chief Administrative Officer. (Doc. 7-1, p. 4).

         While at Pontiac, Plaintiff suffered from twenty-four hour lighting, banging, unsanitary showers, and other restrictions. (Doc. 7, p. 6). He was initially assigned to a cell where his cellmate had smeared feces and blood on the wall, floor, and door. Id. An inmate porter was sent to clean the cell but left before he completed the task. Id. Plaintiff was forced to clean the cell himself, but the smell persisted. Id. The toilet also was hanging off the wall, and the cell was infested with bugs. Id.

         The charges against Plaintiff were ultimately expunged by the Administrative Review Board, and his good ...


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