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Parker v. Jamie

United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin

February 23, 2018

JASON M. PARKER, Plaintiff,
NURSE JAMIE, et al., Defendants.



         Plaintiff Jason M. Parker, who was formerly confined at the Kenosha County Jail, filed a complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging that defendants violated his civil rights. This order resolves plaintiff's motion to proceed without prepayment of the filing fee and screens his complaint. Docket Nos. 2 & 1. It also resolves his motions to appoint counsel. Docket Nos. 7 & 8.

         Plaintiff's Motion to Proceed without Prepayment of the Filing Fee

         The Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) applies to this case because plaintiff was incarcerated at the time he filed his complaint. The PLRA gives courts discretion to allow plaintiffs to proceed with their lawsuits without prepaying the $350 filing fee, as long as they comply with certain requirements. 28 U.S.C. § 1915. One of those requirements is that the plaintiff pay an initial partial filing fee. On July 11, 2017, U.S. Magistrate Judge William E. Duffin (the judge assigned to the case at that time) ordered plaintiff to pay an initial partial filing fee of $36.45. Plaintiff paid that fee on July 26, 2017. As such, I will grant his motion to proceed without prepayment of the full filing fee. Plaintiff must pay the remainder of the filing fee.

         Screening of Plaintiff's Complaint

         Federal law requires that I screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). I must dismiss a complaint or portion thereof if the prisoner has raised claims that are legally frivolous or malicious, that fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b).

         To state a claim, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, “that is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows a court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556).

         To proceed under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must allege that: 1) he was deprived of a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States; and 2) the defendant was acting under color of state law. Buchanan-Moore v. County of Milwaukee, 570 F.3d 824, 827 (7th Cir. 2009) (citing Kramer v. Village of North Fond du Lac, 384 F.3d 856, 861 (7th Cir. 2004)); see also Gomez v. Toledo, 446 U.S. 635, 640 (1980). I will give a pro se plaintiff's allegations, “however inartfully pleaded, ” a liberal construction. See Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (quoting Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976)).

         Plaintiff's Allegations

         Plaintiff alleges that on May 13, 2017, inmates on D-Block refused to lockdown, demanding that plaintiff be provided with medical attention for the rashes on his body, which came and went and caused him pain. Plaintiff had been filling out medical slips since February and had not yet been treated.

         Defendant Corporal Carlos and Kenosha County sheriffs told plaintiff to pack his property and that they were putting him in segregation. A minute or two later, Carlos told plaintiff to leave his property. Plaintiff would be going to “medical.” Plaintiff alleges that officers wanted to retaliate against him for filing grievances and because his family called the jail and contacted the health department. C.O. Raire escorted the plaintiff to “medical” around 9:00 to 9:19 p.m. Defendant Nurse Jamie refused to treat plaintiff. When plaintiff asked to go off site, Jamie threatened to have plaintiff put in segregation. Later, Jamie denied everything in front a (visiting) doctor from United Hospital. Docket No. 1 at 2-3.Plaintiff seeks monetary damages. Id. at 4.


         I infer that at the time of the incident described above, the plaintiff was a pretrial detainee. It is well-established that a pretrial detainee must be afforded certain protections under the Fourteenth Amendment, including access to adequate medical care. Jackson v. Ill. Medi-Car, Inc., 300 F.3d 760, 764 (7th Cir. 2002) (citations omitted). Due process rights are at least as great as the protections afforded a convicted prisoner under the Eighth Amendment. Id. Accordingly, when considering a pretrial detainee's claim of inadequate medical care, the analogous standards under the Eighth Amendment are often used. Id. To establish liability for deliberate indifference to a medical need, a prisoner must show: (1) that his medical need was objectively serious; and (2) that the official acted with deliberate indifference to the prisoner's health or safety. Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 834 (1994); Chapman v. Keltner, 241 F.3d 842, 845 (7th Cir. 2001); see also Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104-05 (1976); Zentmyer v. Kendall County, Illinois, 220 F.3d 805, 810 (7th Cir. 2000).

         Based on his allegations, plaintiff has stated a claim against Nurse Jamie for deliberate indifference. He has not, however, stated a claim against any of the other defendants he has named. In order for liability to attach under § 1983, a defendant must have actually caused or participated in the alleged constitutional violation. Vance v. Peters, 97 F.3d 987, 991 (7th Cir. 1996). Plaintiff's complaint does not plead facts sufficient to state a claim against any defendant other than Nurse Jamie. Although he alleges that some of the correctional officers wanted to ...

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