United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin
D. PETERSON District Judge.
Terrance Grissom, a prisoner currently incarcerated at the
Racine Correctional Institution, has filed several lawsuits
alleging that prison officials at various correctional
institutions are threatening to harm him. Plaintiff is a
frequent litigator in this court (he has brought over 60
cases here since 1990) who has “struck out” under
28 U.S.C. § 1915(g) and who independently has been
barred from filing new complaints in this court unless his
allegations show that he is in imminent danger of serious
physical injury. See Grissom v. Kuluike, No.
14-cv-590-jdp (W.D. Wis. Jan. 12, 2015).
have stated previously in plaintiff’s cases, he has
fallen into the habit of filing complaints but then not
responding to court orders or otherwise doing anything to
prosecute his lawsuits. See, e.g., Grissom v.
Luduigson, No. 14-cv-758-jdp (W.D. Wis.) (case dismissed
after plaintiff failed to submit initial partial payment of
filing fee); Grissom v. Vandenlangenberg, No.
14-cv-490-jdp (W.D. Wis.) (same). Many of plaintiff’s
current pleadings fail to fully comply with the Federal Rules
of Civil Procedure. In this order, I will address the
problems with each of plaintiff’s current lawsuits and
give him a chance to either fix them or have the cases
no. 14-cv-808-jdp: Waupun Correctional Institution
initially filed a joint complaint with a prisoner named
Robert Kidd about their treatment at the Waupun Correctional
Institution (WCI). I directed plaintiff to submit $0.03 as an
initial partial payment of the filing fee but he failed to do
so, even after opening a new case in this court, No.
15-cv-705-jdp. Kidd responded by filing a motion to dismiss
plaintiff from the ’808 case. In a June 27, 2016,
order, I dismissed plaintiff from the ’808 case because
he failed to prosecute it. Dkt. 39.
plaintiff has filed a motion for a temporary restraining
order or injunction to be transferred to the Mendota Mental
Health Institute (plaintiff is no longer at the Waupun
Correctional Institution, his place of confinement at the
time he filed the ’808 case, and whose warden, William
Pollard, is the defendant in that case). Dkt. 42 and 43.
Plaintiff also asks to stay the case, and for an order
directing prison officials to allow him to “produce
documents to [him] at no cost” and to provide him with
free mailing supplies. Dkt. 42, at 5-6.
not reconsider my decision to dismiss plaintiff from the
’808 case. Plaintiff did not file a timely response to
this court’s order directing him to submit his initial
partial payment, and Kidd has already stated his desire to
continue the case without plaintiff. I will allow plaintiff
to pursue his claims in a new case, separate from
Kidd’s lawsuit, but only if plaintiff confirms his
desire to actually litigate the case by submitting the $0.03
initial partial payment he owes for that case. Plaintiff may
arrange with prison authorities to pay some or all of the
assessment from his release account. From plaintiff’s
trust fund account statement, it looks like he may not have
any funds in his regular account to pay the fee, so I
encourage him to seek the use of his release account funds
for this purpose if he wants to pursue this (or any other)
case. Plaintiff should show a copy of this order to prison
officials to ensure that they are aware that they should send
his initial partial payment to this court.
plaintiff chooses to continue with this lawsuit under a new
case number, he should also submit an amended complaint fully
explaining the basis for his claims. In his original
complaint, plaintiff somewhat vaguely suggested that
defendant Pollard was denying his and Kidd’s complaints
about mistreatment of his mental and physical health
problems. The major thrust of plaintiff’s allegations
seemed to be that he was not receiving proper mental health
treatment, but plaintiff did not explain what he means by
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires a complaint to
include “a short and plain statement of the claim
showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” A
complaint “must be presented with intelligibility
sufficient for a court or opposing party to understand
whether a valid claim is alleged and if so what it is.”
Vicom, Inc. v. Harbridge Merchant Servs., Inc., 20
F.3d 771, 775 (7th Cir. 1994). If plaintiff chooses to file
an amended complaint, he should draft it as if he were
telling a story to people who know nothing about his
situation or defendant Pollard’s actions. Plaintiff
will need to explain what Pollard did that harmed him. In
particular, he needs to be specific about what decisions
about mental health treatment Pollard was involved in and how
Pollard’s actions harmed plaintiff.
attach a blank complaint form to this order so that plaintiff
can explain how Pollard or other prison staff members harmed
him. Plaintiff should make sure to fill out the caption part
of the complaint form so that the court and his opponent or
opponents can understand who he intends to sue.
deny plaintiff’s motions for injunctive relief because
he has not submitted his initial partial payment and because
he has been transferred away from the danger he says he faced
at WCI. Also, I will deny plaintiff’s motions for an
order directing free copies or mailing supplies from prison
officials. This court generally does not interfere with the
prison’s administration of copying or mailing-supply
policies while litigating a lawsuit about completely
unrelated claims. The only instance in which the court might
get involved was if plaintiff could show that prison
officials are effectively barring him from litigating his
lawsuits, but he has not made that showing. He has been able
to file his pleadings and various motions in each of the
above-captioned proceedings, which indicates that prison
officials are not stopping him from litigating them.
Documents he attaches to some of his pleadings also suggest
that plaintiff may seek a legal loan from the DOC.
no. 15-cv-705-jdp: Columbia Correctional Institution
was transferred to the Columbia Correctional Institution, and
he filed a new lawsuit alleging that prison officials there
were threatening to harm him. I directed plaintiff to submit
a six-month copy of his trust fund account statement and to
file an amended complaint containing a caption. Dkt. 2 in the
’705 case. I also warned plaintiff that, given his
history of initiating cases but then refusing to prosecute
them, I would dismiss the ’705 case if he failed to
respond to the order.
has responded by filing his prison trust fund account
statement, which the court uses to determine an initial
partial payment of the filing fee. Section 1915(b)(1). The
initial partial payment is calculated by using the method
established in § 1915 by figuring 20 percent of the
greater of the average monthly balance or the average monthly
deposits to the plaintiff’s trust fund account. From
the account statement plaintiff has submitted, I calculate
his initial partial payment to be $0.03. Like in the
’808 case, plaintiff may arrange with prison
authorities to pay some or all of the assessment for this
case from his ...