United States District Court, C.D. Illinois
MERIT REVIEW ORDER
A. BAKER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
case is before the court for a merit review of the
plaintiff's amended 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. §
reviewing the amended complaint, the Court accepts the
factual allegations as true, liberally construing them in the
plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d
645, 649 (7th Cir. 2013). However, conclusory statements and
labels are insufficient. Enough facts must be provided to
state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face.
Alexander v. U.S., 721 F.3d 418, 422 (7th Cir. 2013)
alleges that, since filing a petition for writ of habeas
corpus, Defendants Bleeker, Hammond, Williams and Hanlin, all
prison guards, have retaliated against him by (1) forcing him
to keep his legal documents in his property box, rather than
on a shelf in his cell; (2) writing false disciplinary
reports against him and yelling at him for walking out of
line despite other inmates doing the same thing; (3)
scattering his belonging around his cell during shakedowns;
(4) seizing property he was authorized to have; (5) not
giving him adequate law library time; and (6) separating him
from his preferred cellmate, then assigning him to share a
cell with several gang members and later with an inmate who
smells bad and openly flouts prison rules.
also alleges that prison psychologists have failed to fix his
roommate problems to his satisfaction, that an Assistant
Attorney General representing the warden in his habeas
petition has disobeyed court orders in another case, and that
he has sent grievances to Warden Hammers, apparently without
receiving a response.
states a retaliation claim against Defendant Bleeker,
Hammond, Williams, and Hanlan. Bridges v. Gilbert,
557 F.3d 541, 553 (7th Cir. 2009). Plaintiff also states a
plausible retaliation claim against Warden Hammers based upon
the warden's apparent knowledge of the situation gained
via the grievance process and the alleged failure to remedy
the problem. Perez v. Fenoglio, 792 F.3d 768, 781
(7th Cir. 2015).
remaining claims will be dismissed without prejudice as,
although Plaintiff attempts to link the claims in his amended
complaint under a general “campaign of harassment,
” Plaintiff's claims are either unrelated to the
actions of Defendants Bleeker, Hammond, Williams, Hanlan, and
Hammers, or they involve unrelated claims. George v.
Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir. 2007)
(“Unrelated claims against different defendants belong
in different suits.”); Owens v. Godinez, 860
F.3d 434, 436 (7th Cir. 2017) (“[D]istrict courts
should not allow inmates to flout the rules for joining
claims and defendants…or to circumvent the Prison
Litigation Reform Act's fee requirements by combining
multiple lawsuits into a single complaint.”).
Plaintiff's motion to amend complaint (#11) is granted.
Clerk is directed to docket the amended complaint attached to
Pursuant to its merit review of the Complaint under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, the court finds that the plaintiff states an
First Amendment retaliation claim against Defendants Bleeker,
Hammond, Williams, Hanlan, and Hammers. 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. The plaintiff is
advised to wait until counsel has appeared for the defendants
before filing any motions, in order to give the 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. The
plaintiff need not submit any evidence to the court at this
time, unless otherwise directed by the court.
court will attempt service on the defendants by mailing each
defendant a waiver of service. The defendants have 60 days
from the date the waiver is sent to file an answer. If the
defendants have not filed answers or appeared through counsel
within 90 days of the entry of this order, the plaintiff may
file a motion requesting the status of service. After the
defendants have been served, the court will enter an order
setting discovery and dispositive motion deadlines.
respect to a defendant who no longer works at the address
provided by the 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 opinion. In
general, an answer sets forth the defendants' positions.
The court does not rule on the merits of those positions