United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
R. Herndon Judge
was incarcerated at Lincoln Correctional Center
(“Lincoln”), at the time he brought this pro
se civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983. He has since been released. (Docs. 9, 11). His claims
arose while he was confined at Pinckneyville Correctional
Center (“Pinckneyville”), where he was the victim
of an attack by his cellmate. This case is now before the
Court for a preliminary review of the Complaint pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1915A.
§ 1915A, the Court is required to screen prisoner
complaints to filter out non-meritorious claims. See
28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The Court must dismiss any portion
of the complaint that is legally frivolous, malicious, fails
to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or asks
for money damages from a defendant who by law is immune from
such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b).
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 “no
reasonable person could suppose to have any merit.”
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. Conversely, a complaint is plausible on
its face “when the plaintiff pleads factual content
that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
Although the Court is obligated to accept factual allegations
as true, see Smith v. Peters, 631 F.3d 418, 419 (7th
Cir. 2011), some factual allegations may be so sketchy or
implausible that they fail to provide sufficient notice of a
plaintiff's claim. Brooks v. Ross, 578 F.3d 574,
581 (7th Cir. 2009). Additionally, Courts “should not
accept as adequate abstract recitations of the elements of a
cause of action or conclusory legal statements.”
Id. At the same time, however, the factual
allegations of a pro se complaint are to be
liberally construed. See Arnett v. Webster, 658 F.3d
742, 751 (7th Cir. 2011); Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance
Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
fully considering the allegations in Plaintiff's
complaint, the Court concludes that one of Plaintiff's
claims survives threshold review.
brief statement of claim is as follows:
On or about 12/5/15 while I was [a]sleep the cellmate
IM-Torress started beating me in my face/ The C/Os working
the shift didn't make no routine rounds [sic] to check on
inmates sleeping. I was beaten so bad my entire face was
swollen. The Administration Authorities tried concealing the
matter. I'm still having problems with my eyes and
extreme headaches daily. I went to health care and they took
me to the outside hospital because of the seriousness of my
injuries. I shouldn't have had to experience this type of
brutality in prison.
(Doc. 1, p. 5).
describes Defendant Hess as the C/O on duty at the time he
was beaten. (Doc. 1, p. 1). Lin was the Internal Affairs
Officer who investigated the incident, and Nurse Angel
documented Plaintiff's injuries. (Doc. 1, p. 2).
attached grievance, Plaintiff states that the cellmate began
beating him “without notice, ” punching and
choking him for maybe half an hour or more. (Doc. 1, p. 10).
Officers were supposed to make rounds every 15 to 30 minutes.
Id. This grievance indicates that the pain relief
medication prescribed for Plaintiff was delayed, and that he
may not have received medical care to address the visual
impairment that resulted from the beating. (Doc. 1, p. 11).
Plaintiff further states in the grievance that he had brought
his safety concerns to the attention of Hess on numerous
occasions. Id. Two weeks prior to the beating, he
told Hess that the cellmate had said that he “wanted to
hurt someone anyone [sic] so that he can be transferred to
maximum security.” Id. Hess responded that his
“hands w[ere] tied” but he would try to get the
cellmate moved. Id.
seeks compensatory damages for his pain and suffering. (Doc.
1, p. 6).
Review Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A
on the allegations of the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the pro se action into the
following counts. The parties and the Court will use these
designations in all future pleadings and orders, unless
otherwise directed by a judicial officer of this Court. The
designation of these counts does not constitute an opinion as
to their merit. Any other claim that is ...