United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
CAINE J. WILLE, Plaintiff,
JEFFREY PUGH, SARAH BARTH, MARIO CANZIANI, KYLE ESLINGER, AND CHRISTOPHER BUESGEN, Defendants.
DECISION AND ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION
FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT (DKT. NO. 97) AND DISMISSING THE
PAMELA PEPPER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
pro se plaintiff, Caine J. Wille, is a former
Wisconsin Department of Corrections inmate. The events
alleged in his complaint concern his incarceration at Stanley
Correctional Institution (“SCI”), and what he
alleges was his improper transfer to the Wisconsin Secure
Program Facility (“WSPF”). On April 18, 2014,
Judge Adelman issued an order allowing the plaintiff to
proceed on a failure to protect claim arising out of his
transfer to WSPF, where correctional officers he had known
him from high school allegedly sexually assaulted him. Dkt.
December 18, 2015, the defendants filed a motion for summary
judgment, Dkt. No. 97, and a supporting brief, Dkt. No. 98.
The plaintiff filed his opposition brief on January 6, 2016,
Dkt. No. 108, and the defendants filed their reply on
February 4, 2016, Dkt. No. 110. Although he did not seek, or
obtain, leave from the court, on March 9, 2016, the plaintiff
filed a sur-reply. Dkt. No. 111. For the reasons stated
below, the court grants the defendants’ motion for
plaintiff is a former inmate at the SCI. Dkt. No. 70. The
defendants are employees at the SCI: Warden Jeffrey Pugh,
Social Worker Sarah Barth, Deputy Warden Mario Canziani, Line
Supervisor Kyle Eslinger, and Security Director Christopher
Buesgen. Dkt. No. 99, ¶¶1, 3, 6, 8, 10.
The Plaintiff’s Allegations
November 6, 2012, the plaintiff and another inmate engaged in
a physical altercation at SCI. Id. at ¶15. An
officer witnessed the altercation, and gave the plaintiff a
conduct report. Id. Captain Steinke, the hearing
examiner assigned to the matter, sentenced the plaintiff to
serve 240 days of disciplinary segregation and referred him
to the Program Review Committee (“PRC”) to
determine whether his custody status should change as a
result of the conduct report. Id. at
November 21, 2012, social worker Sarah Barth interviewed the
plaintiff on behalf of the PRC. Id. at
¶¶18-19. She concluded that the plaintiff should be
moved to maximum security due to the severity of the physical
altercation. Id. at ¶20. The PRC accepted her
recommendation, and elevated the plaintiff’s custody
status to maximum security with transfer to WSPF general
population. Id. at ¶21.
December 30, 2012, the plaintiff requested an interview with
Barth. Id. at ¶22. He stated in his request
that he knew personally several of the correctional officers
employed at the WSPF. See id. Specifically, he wrote
that Boscobel is “right in my back yard” and that
he “smoke[d] marijuana with a couple [of] COs and
serve[d] [a] couple others alcohol in my bar and watch[ed]
them drive off.” Id.
reviewing the plaintiff’s interview request, Barth
filed an incident report. Id. at ¶23. On
January 3, 2013, Security Director Buesgen forwarded the
incident report to Lieutenant Eslinger and asked him to
investigate. Id. at ¶26. Eslinger interviewed
the plaintiff, who said (among other things) that he knew a
WSPF officer named Richard Matti who allegedly dealt drugs.
Id. at ¶¶26-27. Eslinger deemed the
plaintiff’s allegations about his past interactions
with WSPF staff as credible. Id. As a result,
Eslinger recommended instituting a Special Placement Need
(“SPN”) for the purpose of separating the
plaintiff from Matti. Id. Buesgen approved the SPN
on January 10, 2013. Id. at ¶28.
February 14, 2013, the plaintiff left SCI to travel to Dodge
Correctional Institution, the transfer location. Id.
at ¶32. A week later, on February 20, 2013, correctional
employees improperly transferred the plaintiff to WSPF
(specifically, to general population at WSPF, referred to as
WSGP). Id. More specifically, the computer program
used to track inmate movement-the Wisconsin Integrated
Corrections System (“WICS”)-erroneously sent a
notification to the Bureau of Offender Classification
Movement (“BOCM”), the organization responsible
for scheduling transportation, indicating that it should
transfer the plaintiff to “WSGP.” Id. at
¶¶ 31-32. At that time, WICS listed WSPF’s
“general population” as “WSGP, ” and
the computer recognized “WSPF” and
“WSGP” as two different locations. Id.
As a result, the SPN did not prevent the plaintiff from being
transferred to WSPF. Id. Instead, the SPN at WSPF
caused the computer system to reassign him to WSGP, which is
actually the general population WSPF. Id.
February 23, 2013, WSPF Correctional Officer Nicole Nelson
(not a defendant in this case) recognized the plaintiff as
someone she knew from high school. Id. at ¶40.
Nelson informed WSPF Captain Daryl Flannery (also not a
defendant in this case) that the plaintiff could provide
information about her to other inmates. Id. With
Captain Flannery’s permission, Officer Nelson and
Sergeant Mathew Scullion (also not a defendant in this case)
removed the plaintiff from his cell and ordered him not to
reveal Nelson’s full name to other inmates.
Id. The plaintiff agreed, and the correctional
officers escorted him back to his cell. Id. Four
days later, on February 27, 2013, the Department of
Corrections transferred the plaintiff to Waupun Correctional
Institution. Id. at ¶32.
April 12, 2013, the security director at WCI received from
the plaintiff a sexual assault complaint against Nelson and
Scullion. Id. at ¶41. He alleged that on
February 23, 2013, the officers had threatened him and
sexually assaulted him when they took him out of his cell.
Id. Waupun Correctional Institution Staff commenced
a Prison Rape Elimination Act (“PREA”)
investigation, and began to monitor the plaintiff’s
mail. Id. at ¶¶41-44. They found a letter
from the plaintiff to another inmate, which stated that the
plaintiff lied about the rape allegations because the