United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL, CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
Elroy Henderson, an inmate of the Illinois Department of
Corrections (“IDOC”) who is currently
incarcerated at Pontiac Correctional Center, brings this
civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
deprivations of his constitutional rights. Plaintiff claims
that while he was housed at Menard Correctional Center
(“Menard”), officials used excessive force upon
him, failed to intervene, and were deliberately indifferent
to his serious medical needs. He seeks monetary damages and
injunctive relief. (Doc. 1, pp. 11-12).
Complaint is now before the Court for preliminary review
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Under Section 1915A, the
Court is required to screen prisoner complaints to filter out
non-meritorious claims. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915A(a). Any portion of a 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 must be
dismissed. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). At this juncture, the
factual allegations of the pro se complaint are to
be liberally construed. Rodriquez v. Plymouth Ambulance
Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
to the allegations in the Complaint, on April 23, 2017,
Plaintiff was involved in a physical altercation with several
correctional officers and prisoners. (Doc. 1, p. 2). He was
sprayed with oleoresin capsicum (O.C.) spray and placed in
restraints. Id., pp. 2-3. As he was being escorted
by several unknown correctional officers and Defendant Webb
to the Healthcare Unit (“HCU”) to be
decontaminated, they assaulted him. Id., pp. 2-3, 6.
They then finished escorting him to the HCU.
Williams and Emgelage, nurses at the HCU, took him to an exam
room, where they were met by another nurse, Defendant Lang.
Id., p. 3. Williams left the room as Lang filled out
paperwork, and Emgelage rinsed the O.C. spray off Plaintiff.
Id. An unknown corrections officer (John Doe #1)
asked the nurses to leave the room, which they did.
Id., pp. 3-4. Defendants Bebout, Roundtree, Webb,
Eisenhouer, and Doe #1 then severely beat Plaintiff,
including spraying O.C. into a plastic bag and then placing
it over his head. Id., pp. 4-5. He sustained severe
injuries which required him to be rushed to the hospital.
Id., p. 5. Plaintiff sustained significant permanent
physical and mental injuries. Id., pp. 5-6. Williams
later wrote a falsified incident report to cover up the
circumstances of the assault in the examination room.
Id., pp. 9-10.
on the allegations in the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the claims in this case into the
following five Counts:
Count 1: Eighth Amendment excessive force
claim against Webb, Roundtree, Bebout, Eisenhouer, John Doe
#1, and the other John Doe defendants, as well as a failure
to intervene claim against Williams, Lang, and Emgelage.
Count 2: Fourteenth Amendment equal
protection claim against all Defendants.
Count 3: Eighth Amendment deliberate
indifference to a serious medical need claim against Lang,
Williams, and Emgelage.
Count 4: Eighth Amendment failure to protect
claim against Lang, Williams, and Emgelage.
Count 5: Conspiracy claim against all
parties and the Court will use these designations in all
future pleadings and orders, unless otherwise directed by a
judicial officer of this Court. Any claim that is
mentioned in the Complaint but not addressed
in this Order is considered dismissed without prejudice
as inadequately pled under the
Twombly pleading standard.
initial matter, IDOC is dismissed as a party. Although
Plaintiff names IDOC in the caption of his complaint, he
fails to list it elsewhere in his complaint, so the Court is
unable to ascertain what claims, if any, Plaintiff has
against it. Merely invoking the name of a potential defendant
is not sufficient to state a claim against that individual.
See Collins v. Kibort, 143 F.3d 331, 334 (7th Cir.
1998) (“A plaintiff cannot state a claim against a
defendant by including the defendant's name in the
caption.”). Further, IDOC is not a “person”
subject to suit under Section 1983. Owens v. Evans,
878 F.3d 559, 563 (7th Cir. 2017). As such, it will be