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Allen v. Baldwin

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

April 3, 2018

JOHN ALLEN, #R72384, Plaintiff,
v.
JOHN BALDWIN, KAREN JAIMET, and C/O GILLEY Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          HERNDON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff John Allen, an inmate currently housed at Pinckneyville Correctional Center (“Pinckneyville”), filed this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff claims that Correctional Officer Gilley subjected him to sexual harassment, in violation of his Eighth Amendment rights.

         This case is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the Complaint (Doc. 11) 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).

         The Complaint

         On June 25, 2017, Plaintiff was exiting his wing to attend yard. (Doc. 11, p. 5). When Plaintiff entered the “core, ” Correctional Officer Gilley stopped him and asked, “What the fuck are you looking at?” Correctional Officer Gilley then said, “either want to fuck me or fight me, which is it?” Id. Plaintiff was denied access to the yard and Correctional Officer Gilley escorted Plaintiff back to his cell. Id. Correctional Officer Gilley then said, “We're either gonna fuck or you gonna buy me a new truck.” Id. Plaintiff claims that Officer Gilley has sexually harassed him on multiple occasions and that his encounters with Officer Gilley are causing mental health issues. Id. Plaintiff claims that he has filed multiple complaints and grievances pertaining to Officer Gilley's conduct, to no avail.

         Merits Review Under § 1915(A)

         Based on the allegations of the Complaint, the Court finds it convenient to divide the pro se action into a single count. The parties and the Court will use this designation in all future pleadings and orders, unless otherwise directed by a judicial officer of this Court. The designation of this count does not constitute an opinion regarding its merit.

         Count 1 - Eighth Amendment claim against C/O Gilley for sexually harassing Plaintiff on June 25, 2017, and at other times.

         Plaintiff alleges that Officer Gilley has repeatedly subjected him to sexual harassment. Specifically, on June 25, 2017, Officer Gilley made threatening comments about engaging in sexual acts with Plaintiff. Plaintiff claims that he is ...


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