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Walker v. Dart

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois

June 6, 2019

Alisha Walker #Y12381, Plaintiff,
v.
Tom Dart, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER

          Jorge L. Alonso, United States District Judge.

         Defendant's motion to dismiss [20] is granted. The complaint [12] is dismissed with prejudice for failure to state a claim. This dismissal shall count as one of Plaintiff's three allotted “strikes” within the meaning of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g). The Clerk is instructed to close this case and enter judgment accordingly. Civil case terminated.

         STATEMENT

         I. Introduction

         Plaintiff Alisha Walker, a prisoner currently confined at Decatur Correctional Center, brings this pro se civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff alleges that she was subjected to unconstitutional living conditions while confined in the Cook County Jail from January 2014 through March 2016. In an order dated December 12, 2018, the Court found that Plaintiff's allegations stated a federal claim for unconstitutional living conditions. (Dkt. 13.)

         Defendant Sheriff Tom Dart now moves to dismiss the complaint, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), on the basis that Plaintiff's § 1983 claim is time-barred. (Dkt. 20.) Plaintiff filed a response. (Dkt. 23.) For the reasons discussed below, the Court grants Defendant's motion to dismiss.

         II. Background

         For purposes of this motion, the Court accepts as true the following allegations in Plaintiff's complaint:

         Plaintiff was detained at Cook County Jail, in Divisions 3 and 4, from January 2014 through March 2016. (Dkt. 12, pg. 4.) Prior to her detention, she was in excellent health. (Id.) Unsanitary living conditions in both Divisions 3 and 4 consisted of: mold and mildew in showers; mold in cells; dirty standing water in showers and cells from burst pipes; raw sewage that backed up into cells every time it rained; mouse droppings in cells; roaches in cells and food; no sunlight or ventilation in cells and living quarters; and radiation from body scans. (Id.) Due to these conditions, Plaintiff began experiencing neck and back pain, joint inflammation, recurring headaches, bouts of nausea and diarrhea, insomnia, panic attacks and breathing problems. (Id., pg. 5.) Plaintiff repeatedly sought medical attention for these conditions, both while at Cook County Jail and later once she was in IDOC custody. (Id.) After blood testing, Plaintiff was eventually diagnosed with severe inflammation throughout her body. (Id.)

         Based on these allegations, the Court allowed Plaintiff to proceed on a claim of unsanitary living conditions. (Dkt. 13.)

         III. Standard of Review

         When evaluating a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, the pertinent pleading standard is Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2). Under that rule, a complaint generally need only include “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). This short and plain statement must “give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 167 L.Ed.2d 929 (2007) (alteration in original) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). The Seventh Circuit has explained that this rule “reflects a liberal notice pleading regime, which is intended to ‘focus litigation on the merits of a claim' rather than on technicalities that might keep plaintiffs out of court.” Brooks v. Ross, 578 F.3d 574, 580 (7th Cir. 2009) (quoting Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N.A., 534 U.S. 506, 514, 122 S.Ct. 992, 152 L.Ed.2d 1 (2002)).

         “A motion under Rule 12(b)(6) challenges the sufficiency of the complaint to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.” Hallinan v. Fraternal Order of Police of Chi. Lodge No. 7, 570 F.3d 811, 820 (7th Cir. 2009). “[A] complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). These allegations “must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. The allegations that are entitled to the assumption of truth are those that are factual, rather than mere legal conclusions. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678-79.

         IV. ...


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