United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
ADAM A. LOCKE, Plaintiff,
RICHARD SCHMIDT, Milwaukee County Sheriff, et al., Defendants.
WILLIAM C. GRIESBACH, CHIEF JUDGE
The plaintiff, who is currently a pretrial detainee at
Milwaukee County Jail and representing himself, filed a
complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that his
civil rights were violated. This matter comes before the
court on Plaintiff's motion for leave to proceed without
prepaying the full filing fee.
to Proceed without Prepayment of the Filing Fee
is required to pay the $400.00 filing fee for this action,
which includes the $350.00 statutory filing fee and a $50.00
administrative fee. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1).
If a prisoner does not have the money to pay the filing fee,
he can request leave to proceed without prepayment of the
full filing fee, or in forma pauperis. In that case,
the prisoner plaintiff proceeding in forma pauperis
is required to pay the full amount of the $350.00 statutory
filing fee, not the $50.00 administrative fee. See
28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). Plaintiff has filed a certified
copy of his prison trust account statement for the six-month
period immediately preceding the filing of his complaint, as
required under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(2), and has been
assessed and paid an initial partial filing fee of $38.
Plaintiff's motion for leave to proceed without prepaying
the filing fee will be granted.
of the Complaint
court is required to 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).
The court 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). A claim is legally frivolous when it lacks an
arguable basis either in law or in fact. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992); Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989); Hutchinson ex
rel. Baker v. Spink, 126 F.3d 895, 900 (7th Cir. 1997).
state a cognizable claim under the federal notice pleading
system, the plaintiff is required to provide a “short
and plain statement of the claim showing that [he] is
entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). The
complaint must contain sufficient factual matter “that
is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal,
556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). The court accepts
the factual allegations as true and liberally construes them
in the plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729
F.3d 645, 651 (7th Cir. 2013). Nevertheless, the
complaint's allegations “must be enough to raise a
right to relief above the speculative level.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (citation omitted).
of the Complaint
brings three different allegations during the complaint, all
of which pertain to the conditions of his confinement at the
Milwaukee County Jail. First, he complains that the heating
and ventilation systems are malfunctioning in the unit where
he is confined, which is causing “hazardous heat”
in cell and has resulted in dehydration and physical
injuries, like dizziness, nausea, and fainting. He alleges he
has complained to every officer on every shift. Specifically,
he alleges that Captain Jubilee, Officer Newman, and Officer
Turner have all investigated the heating problem, remarked
about the cell's heat, and requested maintenance to be
sent to fix the problems, but that nothing has changed.
Plaintiff alleges that Sheriff Schmidt, Captain Dubson, and
Captain Dittberner were placed on notice of the heating and
ventilation problems by himself, his grievances, and by staff
members who relayed concerns about the systems and nothing
has been done. He alleges the extreme heat has caused him
physical problems, including dehydration, nausea, and
fainting. Additionally, Plaintiff alleges that although he
has been moved to two different cells, all of his cells have
suffered from the same heating an ventilation problems.
brings two other claims. First, he alleges the laundry
procedures are insufficient because he only receives clean
clothes on Wednesdays and Fridays. Accordingly, inmates have
to wear the same clothes from Friday to Wednesday, which he
dislikes because the cell's heat and playing basketball
during recreational time leave him and other inmates sweaty.
He also alleges that sometimes he does not receive a full set
of clean clothes, which results in him wearing the same
socks, underwear, or smocks for a week. Lastly, he alleges
inmates caught with extra laundry or washing the laundry in
their sink face disciplinary consequences.
final claim pertains to Milwaukee County Jail's law
library, which Plaintiff feels is inadequate because it does
not have computers or access to legal research databases.
Instead, the law library has books and someone who will copy
relevant statutes and cases for inmates. Plaintiff alleges
this is insufficient because the books are old and missing
Heating and Ventilation Systems
Eighth Amendment prohibits “cruel and unusual
punishment” of a prisoner. U.S. Const. amend. VIII.
“In order to violate the Eighth Amendment, the
condition of confinement must be a denial of ‘basic
human needs' or the ‘minimal civilized measure of
life's necessities.'” Antonelli v.
Sheahan, 81 F.3d 1422, 1427 (7th Cir. 1996) (citing
Rhodes v. Chapman, 452 U.S. 337, 347 (1981)).
Additionally, the “infliction must be deliberate or
otherwise reckless in the criminal law sense, which means
that the defendant must have committed an act so dangerous
that his knowledge of the risk can be inferred or that the
defendant actually knew of an impending harm easily
preventable.” Id. (citations omitted).
Furthermore, the Due Process Clause prohibits any kind of
punishment of a pretrial detainee,  not simply cruel and unusual
punishment. Id. (citations omitted). “A