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Mays v. Evans

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

January 3, 2018

MICHAEL A.J. MAYS, Plaintiff,
v.
S. EVANS, Defendant.

          ORDER

          HON. REONA J. DALY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court for consideration of Plaintiff's second amended complaint, which the Court construes as a Motion for Leave to File Second Amended Complaint (Doc. 28). For the reasons set forth below, the Motion is GRANTED IN PART AND DENIED IN PART.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff Michael Mays filed this lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging his constitutional rights were violated while he was incarcerated at Menard Correctional Center. In his complaint, Plaintiff alleges Officer Evans verbally harassed and then physically assaulted him on December 14, 2015. Plaintiff's complaint was screened pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, and he is proceeding on an Eighth Amendment excessive force claim against Defendant Evans.

         Plaintiff filed a first amended complaint, construed by the Court as a motion for leave to amend, on April 28, 2017 (Doc. 21). Prior to the entry of an order on his first motion for leave to amend, Plaintiff filed a second amended complaint, construed by the Court as a second motion for leave to amend (Doc. 28). Plaintiff's filing of his second motion for leave to amend necessarily moots his first motion for leave to amend. However, Plaintiff's proposed amended complaints are, in substance, identical.

         In his second motion to amend now before the Court, Plaintiff seeks to include additional claims against Defendant Evans and add Officer Olson and Warden Kimberly Butler as defendants. More specifically, Plaintiff seeks to proceed on the following claims:

Count One: First Amendment and Fourteenth Amendment retaliation claim against Defendant Evans;
Count Two: Eighth Amendment cruel and unusual punishment claim against Defendant Evans;
Count Three: Fourteenth and Eighth Amendment cruel and unusual punishment claim against Defendant Olson;
Count Four: Eighth Amendment cruel and unusual punishment claim against Defendant Butler;
Count Five: Civil conspiracy claim against Defendants Evans, Olson, and Butler;
Count Six: State law battery claim against Defendant Evans; and
Count Seven: State law intentional infliction of emotional distress claim against Defendants Evans, Olson, and Butler.

         DISCUSSION

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 15(a) provides that a party may amend a pleading and that leave to amend should be freely given "when justice so requires." The Seventh Circuit maintains a liberal attitude toward the amendment of pleadings "so that cases may be decided on the merits and not on the basis of technicalities." Stern v. U.S. Gypsum, Inc., 547 F.2d 1329, 1334 (7th Cir. 1977). The Circuit recognizes that "the complaint merely serves to put the defendant on notice and is to be freely amended or constructively amended as the case develops, as long as amendments do not unfairly surprise or prejudice the defendant." Toth v. USX Corp., 883 F.2d 1297, 1298 (7th Cir. 1989); see also Winger v. Winger, 82 F.3d 140, 144 (7th Cir. 1996) (quoting Duckworth v. Franzen, 780 F.2d 645, 649 (7th Cir. 1985)) ("The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure create [a system] in which the complaint does not fix the plaintiff's rights but may ...


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