United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Yandle United States District Judge
Carlos Johnson, an inmate of the Illinois Department of
Corrections (“IDOC”) currently incarcerated at
Western Illinois Correctional Center, brings this action
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for alleged deprivations of
his constitutional rights while at Shawnee Correctional
Center (“Shawnee”). Plaintiff submitted an
Amended Complaint for review and a Motion to Amend Complaint
was docketed and is now before the Court (Doc. 6).
Plaintiff's Motion to Amend is GRANTED.
The Clerk of Court is DIRECTED as follows:
to file Plaintiff's Amended Complaint on the docket; to
add Dr. David, Sgt. Grear, Kim Johnston, Lt. Gentry, M.
Littrell, R. Barnard, Nurse Reynolds, Nurse Blake, C/O Owens,
Z. Moore, Lt. Bradford, Harry Allard, John Doe Sergeant, and
Sgt. Johnson to the docket; and to correct Dr. Burrell's
name to Dr. Thomas Burrell and Kasey Hughes's name to
claims Defendants failed to protect him from two inmate
assaults in violation of the Eighth Amendment and retaliated
against him in violation of the First Amendment. He also
alleges that Defendants were deliberately indifferent to the
injuries resulting from the assaults, in violation of the
Eighth Amendment. He seeks monetary damages and declaratory
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).
makes the following allegations in the Amended Complaint: On
February 14, 2019, Plaintiff was in the commissary when
Inmate Sykes threatened him in a loud voice. C/O Ricky
Daugherty was also in the commissary taking cell numbers down
and overheard the threat but ignored it and continued with
his count. Plaintiff left the commissary building and was
struck in the mouth and knocked unconscious by Sykes.
Daugherty then pulled Sykes away from Plaintiff.
result of the February 14, 2019 assault, Plaintiff suffered
an injury to his front tooth (tooth #9). Dr. Thomas Burrell
saw Plaintiff for the injury and took an x-ray which showed
moderate bone loss. Dr. Burrell also tried to push the tooth
back causing Plaintiff pain. He prescribed Plaintiff
amoxicillin and ibuprofen and stated that he would follow-up
with Plaintiff in 7 days.
Burrell visited Plaintiff in segregation to examine his tooth
on February 21, 2019. He recommended pulling tooth #14 but
Plaintiff stated that he had previously been told by a prison
dentist that the tooth would need oral surgery. Plaintiff
informed Sgt. Grear that he did not want treatment from Dr.
Burrell and wanted to return to his cell, but Dr. Burrell
grabbed Plaintiff by the throat and told him to open his
mouth. Sgt. Grear yelled three times for Dr. Burrell to let
go of Plaintiff's throat. Sgt. Grear failed to file an
incident report, in violation of IDOC policy.
saw Dr. Burrell on April 2, 2019 and he again offered to pull
the tooth. As the two were discussing his teeth, Dental
Hygienist James entered the office and asked Plaintiff
several times “Do you know where [you're] at? We
don't have to send you nowhere to get nothing
done.” He then stormed out the of the office and
informed a correctional officer to remove Plaintiff from the
dentist office. James told Plaintiff to write a grievance
about his actions. Plaintiff believes James denied him
medical treatment in retaliation for writing grievances.
April 20, 2019, Plaintiff spoke with Officer Johnson and
asked for medical care as his tooth broke in half while
eating lunch. Officer Johnson called Dr. Burrell about
Plaintiff's tooth. Although Dr. Burrell instructed
Officer Johnson to send Plaintiff over for care, John Doe
Sergeant denied Plaintiff's request to go to the
healthcare unit and told him to lock up. Nurse R. Barnard
falsified Plaintiff's medical records to show that he
refused care and was argumentative, further denying him care.
wrote grievances about his medical treatment but K. Seip kept
returning them as duplicate grievances when they were not
duplicates. Plaintiff also wrote K. Smoot numerous letters
about his dental treatment, but she did not respond. He also
wrote a grievance about his dental care and Burrell's
treatment of Plaintiff, but Gladyse C. Taylor and Amy Burle
denied the grievance as moot. Jeffrey Dennison also denied a
grievance related to his dental care.
saw Dr. Burrell again on April 24, 2019 for the now broken
tooth. During the visit, Sgt. Johnson stood over Plaintiff in
a threatening manner while Plaintiff was in the dentist
chair. Plaintiff again declined Dr. Burrell's request to
pull the tooth and Dr. Burrell responded to Sgt. Johnson that
he told Plaintiff he could pull the tooth. Plaintiff was
afraid during the visit and asked to return to his cell.
Plaintiff believes that Sgt. Johnson and Dr. Burrell
purposefully intimidated him during the visit to prevent care
and as a form of retaliation for filing grievances about his
saw nurse Kasey Freeman in the healthcare unit on May 29,
2019 for blood pressure medication and asked for care for his
back tooth as it was broken in half and causing him pain.
Freeman responded that Plaintiff was blackballed from the
dentist because he files too many grievances. Plaintiff did
not see anyone for the injuries to his teeth again.
Sykes and Plaintiff were both placed in segregation as a
result of the assault and Sykes told other inmates in
segregation that Plaintiff was a state witness and had
received full immunity in a triple murder case. Plaintiff
wrote an emergency grievance about the threats to Warden
Jeffrey Dennison on February 14, 2019 and asked for a
transfer and protective custody. He also wrote a letter to
Dennison. The grievance was denied by Jeffery Dennison,
grievance officer Bob Allard, K. Seip, Administrative Review
Board (“ARB”) official Amy Burle, and IDOC
Director Rob Jeffreys.
wrote another emergency grievance on March 2, 2019 about the
threats and that Plaintiff believed he was in danger because
other inmates were also threatening him. The grievance was
not deemed an emergency and was sent to counselor Harry
Allard. Harry Allard informed Plaintiff that he needed more
information, including the incident report and dates of the
incident. Harry Allard improperly required Plaintiff to
submit the incident report when the grievance involved
threats by other inmates and not the original incident
went before the Adjustment Committee on February 20, 2019.
Adjustment Committee members Lt. Austin Laster and
Christopher Housman asked Plaintiff if he feared for his
safety. Plaintiff informed the committee members that Inmate
Sykes was telling other inmates in segregation that he was a
state witness and had received full immunity. Although
Plaintiff requested a transfer, Laster and Housman only
recommended that Plaintiff be kept separate from Inmate
Sykes. Plaintiff also wrote Intel Officer Hughes about the
threats but never received a response.
4, 2019, Plaintiff was approached by two inmates who asked
Plaintiff if he was a state witness and had received immunity
for a triple murder. The two inmates then stabbed Plaintiff
multiple times in the face, back, arms, and chest. One of the
inmates gouged his right eye with a thumb. His middle finger
was dislocated in the attack and he was hit with a hotpot and
a sock filled with batteries.
was taken to the healthcare unit after the attack where Kasey
Freeman falsified the report by stating that some of the
injuries were self-inflicted by Plaintiff. He informed
Freeman that his eye hurt and he believed it was cut, but she
refused to treat his eye and told him to stop being a baby.
Another nurse later noted on June 6, 2019 that his eye was
red and had possible abrasions.
met with Lt. Bradford and Z Moore in the Internal Affairs
Office on June 5, 2019 after the fight. Plaintiff informed
them of the assault. Lt. Bradford pointed out that he had a
grievance from Plaintiff on his desk from February 4, 2019
and noted that it was funny that the grievance related to
failure to protect. He then falsely wrote a disciplinary
ticket for fighting despite the fact that Plaintiff was the
only one that received injuries in the assault by the two
saw Dr. David on June 6, 2019 for his dislocated finger. Dr
David pulled on Plaintiff's finger causing him pain. Dr.
David ordered a muscle relaxer, but Nurse Freeman gave
Plaintiff a shot of Toridol in addition to the muscle
relaxer. Dr. David returned and kept pulling on
Plaintiff's finger to reduce the dislocation but
fractured the finger in the process. Plaintiff was sent to
the emergency room and his left hand was placed in a splint.
He was ordered to follow up with an orthopedic physician. At
the emergency room, he learned that his blood pressure was
200 over 166 due to the additional medicine given by Freeman.
7, 2019, M. Littrell falsified Plaintiff's medical
records stating Plaintiff refused care and that she provided
him with Tylenol. M. Littrell did not treat ...