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Johnson v. Watson

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

June 7, 2017

DERRON JOHNSON, #S16950, Plaintiff,
v.
RICHARD WATSON, PHILLIP MCLAURIN, THOMAS TRICE, NANCY SUTHERLAND, and LEVI BRIDGES, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          J. Phil Gilbert U.S. District Judge.

         Plaintiff Derron Johnson, an inmate currently housed in Graham Correctional Center, brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In his Complaint (Doc. 1), Plaintiff claims the defendants subjected him to unconstitutional conditions of confinement during his time in St. Clair County Jail ("Jail"). 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 Complaint and any supporting exhibits, the Court finds it appropriate to exercise its authority under § 1915A; this action is subject to summary dismissal.

         The Complaint

         In his Complaint (Doc. 1), Plaintiff makes the following allegations: Plaintiff "was subjected to poor and inadequate living conditions, overcrowding, insects, mice, and medical issues due to filthy and poor living conditions." (Doc. 1, p. 1). Further, "[a]dequate cleaning materials were denied daily to keep the showers and toilets and other living areas clean." Id. Plaintiff "filed complaints through the complains [sic] request because there was no grievance procedure" at the Jail. (Doc. 1, p. 2). Plaintiff complained to the defendants that he was "being subjected to poor living conditions and medical issues due to not being given adequate cleaning materials to clean showers, toilets, and other living areas." Id. Plaintiffs complaints were never returned to him. Id.

         Plaintiff was "subjected to sleeping on the filthy floor with only a mattress and covers while mice and insects [were] all around." Id. Plaintiff was also "subjected to foul odors coming from the toilets and showers because the proper cleaning materials [were] not being passed out to clean with." Id. Plaintiff suffered medical issues including scabies and skin rashes stemming from uncleanly and unhealthy conditions at the Jail. Id. Plaintiff submitted complaints to the defendants, but they "deliberately ignored the issues by refusing to address" the situation. Id.

         Plaintiff seeks monetary damages from Sheriff Richard Watson, Superintendent Phillip McLaurin, Captain Thomas Trice, Lieutenant Nancy Sutherland, and Sergeant Levi Bridges. (Doc. 1, pp. 2-3).

         Discussion

         Based on the allegations of the Complaint, the Court finds it convenient to designate a single count in this pro se action. The parties and the Court will use these designations in all future pleadings and ...


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