United States District Court, C.D. Illinois
MERIT REVIEW ORDER
E. SHADID, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
cause is before the Court for merit review of the
Plaintiff's complaint. The Court is required by 28 U.S.C.
§1915A to “screen” the Plaintiff's
complaint, and through such process to identify and dismiss
any legally insufficient claim, or the entire action if
warranted. A claim is legally insufficient if it “(1)
is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted; or (2) seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune from such relief.” 28 U.S.C.
alleges Plaintiff alleges Warden Justin Hammers and
Correctional Officer Wolfe violated his constitutional rights
at Illinois River Correctional Center. Specifically,
Plaintiff claims Defendant Wolfe used excessive force of
March 22, 2017, when she intentionally and maliciously
slammed a prison door on Plaintiff's hand causing injury.
Plaintiff received medical care and claims he still suffers
with finger numbness and pain running up in his arm.
has adequately alleged Defendant Wolfe violated his Eighth
Amendment rights by the use of excessive force. However,
Plaintiff has failed to state any specific claim against
Warden Hammers and a Defendant cannot be held liable pursuant
to 42 U.S.C.§1983 simply because he is a supervisor.
See Sanville v. McCaughtry, 266 F.3d 724, 740 (7th
Cir. 2001)(“The doctrine of respondeat
superior (supervisor liability) does not apply to §
Court notes it is unclear from Plaintiff's complaint if
he exhausted all available administrative remedies before
filing his complaint, but exhaustion is an affirmative
defense more appropriately addressed in a motion for summary
judgment if appropriate.
Plaintiff has filed a motion for appointment of counsel.
Plaintiff has no constitutional right to counsel, and the
Court cannot require an attorney to accept pro bono
appointment in a civil case. Therefore, the most the Court
can do is ask for volunteer counsel. See Jackson v.
County of McLean, 953 F.2d 1070, 1071 (7th
considering Plaintiff's motion, the Court must ask two
questions: “(1) has the indigent plaintiff made a
reasonable attempt to obtain counsel or been effectively
precluded from doing so; and if so, (2) given the difficulty
of the case, does the plaintiff appear competent to litigate
it himself?” Pruitt v. Mote, 503 F.3d 647, 654
(7th Cir. 2007), citing Farmer v. Haas,
990 F.2d 319, 322 (7th Cir. 1993). In this case,
Plaintiff has not demonstrated any attempt to find counsel on
his own such as a list of attorneys contacted and copies of
letters sent or received. Therefore, Plaintiff's motion
is denied with leave to refile. 
Pursuant to its merit review of the complaint under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, the Court finds the Plaintiff alleges Defendant
Wolfe violated Plaintiff's Eighth Amendment rights with
the use of excessive force on March 22, 2017. The claim is
stated against the Defendant in his individual capacities
only. Any additional claims shall not be included in the
case, except at the Court's discretion on motion by a
party for good cause shown or pursuant to Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 15.
case is now in the process of service. Plaintiff is advised
to wait until counsel has appeared for Defendants before
filing any motions, in order to give Defendants notice and an
opportunity to respond to those motions. Motions filed before
Defendants' counsel has filed an appearance will
generally be denied as premature. Plaintiff need not submit
any evidence to the Court at this time, unless otherwise
directed by the Court.
Court will attempt service on Defendants by mailing each
Defendant a waiver of service. Defendants have 60 days from
service to file an Answer. If Defendants have not filed
Answers or appeared through counsel within 90 days of the
entry of this order, Plaintiff may file a motion requesting
the status of service. After Defendants have been served, the
Court will enter an order setting discovery and dispositive
respect to a Defendant who no longer works at the address
provided by Plaintiff, the entity for whom that Defendant
worked while at that address shall provide to the Clerk said
Defendant's current work address, or, if not known, said
Defendant's forwarding address. This information shall be
used only for effectuating service. Documentation of
forwarding addresses shall be retained only by the Clerk and
shall not be maintained in the public docket nor disclosed by
Defendants shall file an answer within 60 days of the date
the waiver is sent by the Clerk. A motion to dismiss is not
an answer. The answer should include all defenses appropriate
under the Federal Rules. The answer and subsequent pleadings
shall be to the issues and claims stated in this Order. In
general, an answer sets forth Defendants' positions. The
Court does not rule on the merits of those positions unless
and until a motion is filed by Defendants. Therefore, no
response to the answer is necessary or will be considered.
counsel has appeared for a Defendant, Plaintiff need not send
copies of his filings to that Defendant or to that
Defendant's counsel. Instead, the Clerk will file
Plaintiff's document electronically and send a notice of
electronic filing to defense counsel. The notice of
electronic filing shall constitute service on Defendants
pursuant to Local Rule 5.3. If ...