United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Herndon United States District Judge
Marc Norfleet, an inmate in Menard Correctional Center,
brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional
rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for events that
happened at Pinckneyville Correctional Center and Stateville
Correctional Center. Plaintiff requests injunctive relief,
costs & fees, declaratory relief, and damages. This case
is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the Third
Amended Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, which
(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 Third Amended Complaint, the Court
finds it appropriate to exercise its authority under §
1915A; this action is subject to summary dismissal.
Third Amended Complaint
originally filed this suit in the Northern District of
Illinois on November 3, 2017. (Doc. 1). The original
complaint was stricken for failure to conform to federal
notice pleading requirements. (Doc. 7). Plaintiff filed an
Amended Complaint on January 18, 2018. (Doc. 12). The
Northern District then transferred the case here on March 12,
2018. (Doc. 14). Plaintiff submitted 2 proposed amended
complaints in a short period of time, and the Court caused
the most recent one to be filed as the Third Amended
Complaint on July 10, 2018. (Doc. 26) (Doc. 27).
alleges that Defendants caused him to lose the case
Norfleet v. Shah, No. 14-cv-1408-JPG-PMF
(“14-1408”) after Judge Gilbert issued an order
requiring prison officials to show cause regarding
Plaintiff's access to legal supplies in No.
15-cv-0160-JPG-SCW (“15-160”). (Doc. 27, p. 8).
Plaintiff alleges that Defendants IDOC, Prusacki-Newton,
Spiller, Taylor, Baldwin, and Benton enforced a policy that
arbitrarily deprived Plaintiff of adequate legal supplies
after he became indigent. (Doc. 27, pp. 8-9). The lack of
legal supplies caused Plaintiff to lose 14-1408 and the
appeal of that case, Norfleet v. Shah, 15-2401 (7th
Cir.). (Doc. 17, p. 9). Plaintiff alleges that Defendants
took this retaliatory step against him after Judge Gilbert
entered an order directing their subordinate employees to
respond on April 13, 2016. Id. (15-160, Doc. 14).
Plaintiff received a notice that his appeal in 15-2401 had
been dismissed by the Seventh Circuit on November 18, 2015.
(Doc. 27, p. 9). He immediately requested an envelope from
Prusacki-Newton, Rolla, and Spiller. (Doc. 27, pp. 9, 11).
Plaintiff's request was denied pursuant to a policy of
only providing 2 envelopes per month to indigent inmates
promulgated by IDOC, Baldwin, Taylor, Benton, Qualls, and
Spiller. Id. Plaintiff then crafted his own
envelope, but Hale refused to mail it out on November 21,
2015, further depriving Plaintiff of access to the courts.
(Doc. 27, p. 12). Hale falsely claimed that the U.S. Postal
Service does not permit re-used envelopes. Id. Hale
later contradicted herself and told Plaintiff that it was
IDOC, Baldwin, Taylor, Benton, Qualls, and by extensions,
Spiller and the IDOC's policy to not permit inmates to
re-use envelopes. Id.
was transferred to Stateville on December 1, 2015, but he
alleges that Prusacki-Newton and Spiller's refusal to
give him an envelope cost him 12 out of 14 days to respond to
the mandate, and effectively caused the loss of both the
appeal and the case in the district court. (Doc. 27, pp. 9,
11). Plaintiff alleges that other inmates, like William
Malone, were not treated in this manner. (Doc. 27, p.
9).Plaintiff was also unable to mail grievances to the ARB.
Id. While at Stateville, Plaintiff alleges that
Johnson and Tejeda denied him access to adequate legal
research due to IDOC, Baldwin, Benton, and Qualls'
intentional refusal to allow Stateville to have an adequate
law library. (Doc. 27, p. 11).
alleges that IDOC, Baldwin, Benton, Spiller, and
Miller-Pickering denied Plaintiff his First, Fifth, and
Fourteenth Amendment rights in retaliation by taking his
entire state stipend and applying it to Plaintiff's debt
for legal copies and legal postage fees since 2010. (Doc. 27,
p. 10). Plaintiff alleges that they only confiscate his
stipend, and not any other inmates'. Id. This
leaves Plaintiff without funds to shop in the commissary for
stationary, and he needs stationary to litigate. Id.
Plaintiff again points to Malone as an example of an inmate
treated differently than him, and alleges that Malone also
owes extensive legal copy, postage, and court fees.
Id. Plaintiff alleges that this conduct also
contributed the loss of 15-2401 and 14-1408. Id.
Hale prevented Plaintiff from paying the partial filing fee
in 15-2401. Id.
alleges that IDOC, Baldwin, Taylor, Benton, and Flatt
deprived Plaintiff of his First and Fourteenth Amendment
rights by making the institutional grievance process
unavailable to Plaintiff. (Doc. 27, p. 13). Specifically,
Flatt would ignore the facts of Plaintiff's grievances so
that they would be denied later by the Administrative Review
Board (“ARB”). (Doc. 27, p. 14).
alleges that the policies of denying his grievances and
depriving him of adequate legal supplies continued into 2017.
(Doc. 27, p. 15).
Plaintiff alleges that IDOC, Prusacki-Newton, Spiller,
Taylor, Baldwin, Benton, Qualls, Rolla, Hale,
Miller-Pickering, Flatt, Tejeda, Johnson, and Butler-Winters
inflicted cruel and unusual punishment on Plaintiff. (Doc.
27, p. 25). Plaintiff alleges that the Attorney General's
office has never made his full medical records available to
him, and that he will need those records to prove the
specific dates he suffered from physical and emotional pain
caused by Defendants' actions. Id. Plaintiff
also alleges that as a direct consequence of losing
Norfleet v. Shah, Shah was permitted to continue
intentionally depriving Plaintiff of medical care for his
the facts at issue in this lawsuit involve public records of
past lawsuits filed within this Court and the Seventh
Circuit. Courts are permitted to take judicial notice of
matters of public record. General Elec. Capital Corp., v.
Lease Resolution Corp.128 F.3d 1074, 1081 (7th Cir.
1997); see also Ennenga v. Starns,677 F.3d 766 (7th
Cir. 2012). The facts must be both indisputable and either
known within the jurisdiction of the trial court or capable
of ready determination from sources of unquestioned accuracy.
Id. Court documents are public ...