United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
STANTON E. SILLAS, #N96336, Plaintiff,
C/O LOREA, MARK A. BURTON, COUNSELOR WAKEN, GRIEVANCE OFFICER WALKER, ROBERT C. MUELLER, ANN LAHR, and JOHN R. BALDWIN, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
MICHAEL J. REAGAN, U.S. Chief District Judge
Stanton Sillas, an inmate in Centralia Correctional Center,
brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
alleged deprivations of his constitutional rights. In his
Complaint, Plaintiff claims the defendants have discriminated
against him and deprived him of property without due process
in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment. (Doc. 1). This case
is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the
Complaint 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
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.
careful review of the Complaint and any supporting exhibits,
the Court finds it appropriate to allow this case to proceed
past the threshold stage.
Complaint (Doc. 1), Plaintiff makes the following
allegations: Defendants imposed a rule on Plaintiff,
“not commonly enforced in the Illinois Department of
Corrections (IDOC), requiring Plaintiff to consume food items
purchased from the commissary within two months of
purchase.” (Doc. 1, p. 4). If items violate this rule,
they are confiscated as contraband. Id. On April 22,
2017, Defendant Lorea conducted a shakedown of
Plaintiff's cell and confiscated the following: 2
powdered milk, 4 shredded chicken, 4 bacon, 4 tuna, 4 roast
beef with gravy, 4 chunk ham, 4 beef stew, 4 taco filling, 4
shredded pork, 4 chili with beans, 4 rice, 4 hamburger patty,
4 chicken chunks, 4 pack tortilla shells, 3 double meat
barrels, and 1 sausage and cheese. Id. In the
corresponding disciplinary report, Lorea noted that the
reason for the confiscation was “to determine if
[Plaintiff] had purchased these items through the commissary
in the past 2 months.” Id.
April 26, 2017, Plaintiff admitted to Defendant Burton, the
Program Committee Chairperson, that the items were his and
presented past receipts to prove he purchased them.
Id. Burton found Plaintiff guilty of an infraction,
however, and did not return his food items. Id.
Defendant Warden Mueller approved Burton's decision.
Id. Plaintiff filed a grievance that was heard and
denied by Defendant Counselor Waken. Id. Plaintiff
then sought relief from Defendant Walker, but he also denied
Plaintiff's request for his items. (Doc. 1, p. 5). This
decision was also approved by Mueller. Id. Plaintiff
appealed to the Administrative Review Board, for whom
Defendant Lahr denied Plaintiff's request for the return
of his items. Id. Defendant Director Baldwin
concurred with Lahr's decision. Id.
is no institutional rule at Centralia CC, nor an
Administrative Rule in IDOC requiring inmates to consume food
items purchased at the commissary within 2 months of
purchase.” Id. Further, “no other inmate
of the IDOC is subject to the rule solely imposed upon
Plaintiff.” Id. Plaintiff is therefore being
treated differently from other inmates. Id.
Plaintiff has not been given a reason why his food was
confiscated other than that it was not purchased within the
past two months. Id. Plaintiff believes the
“Defendants' actions were malicious and have no
relation to prison needs.” Id. Plaintiff seeks
monetary damages and injunctive relief to prevent the future
confiscation of his food. (Doc. 1, p. 6).
on the allegations of the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the pro se action into 2
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