United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Yandle United States District Judge
Julio Chavez, an inmate of the Illinois Department of
Corrections (“IDOC”) who is currently
incarcerated at Lawrence Correctional Center, brings this
action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for alleged
deprivations of his constitutional rights. Plaintiff alleges
Defendants violated his due process rights under the
Fourteenth Amendment in connection with a disciplinary ticket
and visitor ban.
case is now before the Court for preliminary review of the
Complaint 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).
Plaintiff makes the following allegations in the Complaint
(Doc. 1): On December 15, 2018 after meeting with his wife in
the visiting room, Plaintiff presented himself to
Correctional Officer (“C/O”) Anthony Senn for a
strip search. (Doc. 1, pp. 7 and 10). During the search, Senn
confiscated a silver wedding band but allowed Plaintiff to
keep his gold wedding band. (Id. at p. 7). Plaintiff
had both rings prior to his arrival at Lawrence.
(Id. at p. 10). Although he was issued a shakedown
slip, he was informed by Senn that he would not receive a
disciplinary ticket but would have to retrieve his wedding
band from property. (Id. at p. 7).
December 16, 2018, Plaintiff received a disciplinary ticket
for contraband and violation of rules. The report falsely
assumes that Plaintiff's wife smuggled in the wedding
band. (Id. at p. 11). On the following day, December
17, 2018, Plaintiff received notice from Russell Goins that
his wife had been permanently banned from visits because she
provided him with contraband. (Id. at pp. 7 and 25).
This ban occurred without any hearing or proof that
Plaintiff's wife had brought contraband into the prison.
(Id. at p. 11).
December 27, 2018, Plaintiff went before the Adjustment
Committee on his December 16, 2018 disciplinary report. (Doc.
1, p. 7). Plaintiff asked the committee members, Darren
Williams and Shanae Mayberry, for two witnesses but neither
witness was called. He also requested that the committee view
the cameras from the day in question. (Id. at pp. 7
and 26). No. final decision was made that day.
January 5, 2019, Plaintiff received the final decision from
the committee. The final report notes that the camera footage
from the incident was inconclusive. (Id. at p. 26).
Plaintiff testified at the hearing that he had both rings
prior to his arrival at Lawrence but the shakedown log noted
that he entered the visiting room with only one gold band and
returned with two bands, one gold and one silver. Plaintiff
was found guilty of both infractions and received one-month C
Grade, an assignment change, and 2 months visiting
restrictions. (Id.). Warden Deanna Brookhart signed
off on the discipline. Plaintiff wrote to Brookhart regarding
the discipline and his wife's permanent ban, but she
never responded to the letter. (Id. at pp. 7,
on the allegations in the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the pro se action into
the following Counts:
Count 1: Anthony L. Senn wrote a false disciplinary
ticket in violation of Plaintiff's due
process rights under the Fourteenth Amendment which resulted
in a permanent ban of Plaintiff's wife as a
Count 2: Russell Goins, Darren N. Williams, Shanae B.
Mayberry, and Deanna Brookhart violated
Plaintiff's due process rights under the Fourteenth
Amendment during the disciplinary hearing and in placing a
permanent visiting restriction on his wife.
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 other claim that
is mentioned in the Complaint but not addressed in this Order
should be considered dismissed without prejudice as
inadequately pled under the Twombly pleading